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CFL Preview: Calgary Stampeders (2-1-0) vs Montreal Alouettes (4-0-0)

MONTREAL — In the third of four inter-divisional games this week, the Calgary Stampeders head east on Saturday night to try and hand the Montreal Alouettes their first loss of the season.

Montreal continued their winning ways by putting up 30 points in a victory over Toronto in Week 4, while Calgary improved to 2-1 by downing Winnipeg in overtime.

Als quarterback Cody Fajardo will attempt to make it five-straight strong starts. He possesses an even 1,200 passing yards and is tied for the league lead with eight touchdowns.

He’ll face one of his toughest tests yet as the Stamps ranked second against the pass after four weeks, allowing 271.3 yards per game.

Receiver Tyson Philpot has been a proven game changer and is just 102 yards shy of breaking his own career-high. He’ll be trying to outdo his brother, Jalen, who’s caught nine of 10 passes for 95 yards for Calgary. Joining Philpot in spreading the field for Fajardo is Kaion Julien-Grant, the other Als receiver in the top 15 in yards.

They won’t have to worry about top defensive back Demerio Houston who’s out with an ankle injury. Without Houston, shutting down the pass game falls on active linebacker Brandon Dozier and defensive backs Kobe Williams and Rodney Randle Jr.

Walter Fletcher has rushed for 174 yards to start the season. He’ll be aiming to add to those numbers against a Stamps front giving up an average of 106.3 per game.

The results may not be what they want, but it’s not a front that lacks talent, especially at linebacker with Micah Awe and Cameron Judge. The pair have combined for 29 defensive tackles and need to be on their game against a talented Als offence that’s scored a league-high 127 points.

If their defence can stop big plays and long drives, it’ll allow quarterback Jake Maier to try and keep pace with his counterpart.

It’s likely going to have to be offence by committee, as the Stamps are in the middle of the pack when it comes to both the pass and run.

Maier’s spread the ball around fairly evenly to Marken Michel, Clark Barnes and Reggie Begelton so far this season, something that should continue against an Als team that led the league in limiting yardage through the air after Week 4.

Defensive backs Marc-Antoine Dequoy, Nafees Lyon and Dionte Ruffin, along with linebacker Tyrice Beverette, all bring an interception into the game and give Jason Maas’ team strong coverage from sideline to sideline.

But as good as the Als are, Maier is up for the challenge.

When Maier turns to hand the ball off, it won’t be to starter Dedrick Mills as he’s out with an oblique issue. Instead, Peyton Logan will carry the load on the ground.

The Stamps offensive line, which has given up five sacks, will have its hands full with the likes of Isaac Adeyemi-Berglund and Mustafa Johnson. Giving Maier time and creating space for Logan is important as they try to gain yards any way they can.

Sporting a perfect record, head coach Jason Maas isn’t concerned about his team getting complacent.

Montreal can be the first team to five wins with a victory.

A win for Calgary would be their first on the road and move them to an impressive 3-1 start.

Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET. Catch the action on TSN/RDS. International fans can watch on CFL+ while U.S fans can tune in on CBS Sports.

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