The second to last week of the 2021 CFL season is in the books. It’s crazy to think that the season is almost done, but snow is just starting to fall meaning the best part of the season is just about to get underway. There has once again been a shake-up to the middle of our rankings, so let’s get right to it.
9. Edmonton Elks (2-10)
Last Ranking: 9th
Week 15: @ Saskatchewan (loss 29-24)
Streak: 8 losses
Next Game: Week 16 @ Toronto & @ BC
The Edmonton Elks didn’t do too bad of a job against the Saskatchewan Roughriders in their week 15 clash, but they came out on the short side. Jonathan Rose picked off Cody Fajardo late in the game, but it was called back for pass interference. The call was really bad and while there is no guarantee that they would have gone down the field and won the game, they would have stood a better chance. Rose was robbed of an interception, and it only gets worse with two games in week 16 to make up for their COVID-19 outbreak earlier in the season. It’s a tough end coming up for them.
8. Ottawa Redblacks (2-11)
Last Ranking: 8th
Week 15: BYE WEEK
Streak: 6 losses
Next Game: Week 16 @ Montreal
The Ottawa Redblacks spent the week on bye ahead of their final game of 2021 in week 16 against the Montreal Alouettes. As of now, who will start at quarterback is still unknown, but it’s almost certainly going to be one of Caleb Evans or Devlin Hodges. They have one last kick at the can before their season comes to an end, and it’s almost time for them to shift their focus to 2022.
7. BC Lions (4-9)
Last Ranking: 7th
Week 15: Vs. Calgary (loss 33-23)
Streak: 7 losses
Next Game: Week 16 Vs. Edmonton
It started to become inevitable that the BC Lions wouldn’t be making the playoffs this season after losing seven consecutive games, but it was made official in their week 15 game against the Calgary Stampeders. It needs to be said that this is a huge disappointment. This roster on paper was up there with the league’s best, especially with Michael Rielly as their quarterback. They made some questionable calls at the end of the game, and they could have possibly snuck out a win if their coaching would have been better. Better luck next season, I guess.
6. Hamilton Tiger-Cats (7-6)
Last Ranking: 2nd
Week 15: @ Toronto (loss 31-12)
Streak: 1 loss
Next Game: Week 16 Vs. Saskatchewan
The Hamilton Tiger-Cats briefly spend a week in the second spot as we pegged them favourites to win the East Division but after a loss to the Toronto Argonauts in week 15, it’s not out of the question that they could be forced on the road in the East semi-final. They have been beaten by the Argos three times this season and have struggled mightily at times. They could still be a threat to get to the Grey Cup, but this is not the path they would have hoped for when the season kicked off in August.
5. Montreal Alouettes (7-6)
Last Ranking: 5th
Week 15: Vs. Winnipeg (win 28-14)
Streak: 1 win
Next Game: Week 16 Vs. Ottawa
A win over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ second-stringers has the Montreal Alouettes alive and fighting for a home playoff date, but they still have work to do. Unfortunately for them, their fate isn’t in their own hands. The Als need a win over the Ottawa Redblacks and need the Tiger-Cats to lose to the Roughriders who will likely be starting mostly backups. The good news is they seem to be peaking at the right time, and with Trevor Harris, they have a serious chance of competing for the Grey Cup.
4. Calgary Stampeders (7-6)
Last Ranking: 4th
Week 15: @ BC (win 33-23)
Streak: 2 wins
Next Game: Week 16 Vs. Winnipeg
The Stampeders did enough to escape with a win in Vancouver, clinching a playoff spot for the 16th consecutive season. After a terrible start, the Stamps have come all the way back and look like they could be legit Grey Cup contenders come December. Now with the signing of Reggie Begelton, the offence is scary and the defence can certainly do enough to win football games. This dynasty might not be done just yet, folks.
3. Toronto Argonauts (9-4)
Last Ranking: 6th
Week 15: Vs. Hamilton (win 31-12)
Streak: 3 wins
Next Game: Week 16 Vs. Edmonton
Alright, we will admit that we were too tough on the Argos last week. We have talked about them being hit or miss, but damn did they hit in week 15. They took the Tiger-Cats to school and clinched the East Division, something they haven’t done since 2017, the same year they won the Grey Cup. They have been very tough to beat at home this season, and it was nice to see a big crowd at BMO Field. Their chances of getting to the Grey Cup are pretty good right now.
2. Saskatchewan Roughriders (9-4)
Last Ranking: 3rd
Week 15: Vs. Edmonton (win 29-24)
Streak: 4 wins
Next Game: Week 16 @ Hamilton
The Roughriders are in second, and really, the only reason that is the case is because we dropped Toronto so low after their close call in Ottawa. Additionally, that pass interference call that negated an interception late in the game was putrid. That was way too close of a call against a bad football team, but they won. They haven’t been all that good recently, so it will be interesting to see if they play their starters or let the backups go in Hamilton.
1. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (11-2)
Last Ranking: 1st
Week 14: @ Montreal (loss 28-14)
Streak: 1 loss
Next Game: Week 16 @ Calgary
The Blue Bombers lost a meaningless game with their backups… who cares really. We know what they are by now, so I won’t waste time talking about what went wrong for them in week 15. They were supposed to lose that game.