CFL Power Rankings – Week 4 2022

The 2022 season in the Canadian Football League has spoiled us through the first four weeks of the campaign. Games have been close, and despite the West Division running roughshod over the East this season, it hasn’t come via blowouts, rather it has been games that come right down to the final seconds in many cases. It has been awesome to watch, and week four was no exception. Once again, we have a bunch of movement as our writers really struggled to get a grip on the middle of the pack, particularly where to place the East teams. Here’s what they have come up with.

9. Hamilton Tiger-Cats (0-4)

Week 3 Ranking: 8th

Highest Ranking: 9th

Lowest Ranking: 9th

Total Points: 63

Week 4 Result: Loss Vs. Edmonton (29-25)

Next Game: Week 6 Vs. Ottawa

There’s only one thing that the Hamilton Tiger-Cats can blame for their woes so far in the 2022 season. It’s not the officials, it’s not injuries, it’s not even the opposition, it’s themselves. With possession of the ball late in the game up by three points, Dane Evans made a crippling mistake by fighting for extra yards on a play where the upside was getting themselves into second and eight yards to go. That decision cost the Cats everything, as Evans fumbled the ball and Edmonton scooped it up for a score. They allowed Edmonton to walk into Tim Horton’s Field with a rookie quarterback and take a win. It’s hard to find positives to take out of games where they infuriatingly find ways to lose every week. The Tiger-Cats have a bye week in week five, and it’s about as pivotal as bye weeks get. Either they come out of it and make things work, or they can start looking to the future. Fans have more than enough reasons to justify their frustration.

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8. Edmonton Elks (1-3)

Week 3 Ranking: 9th

Highest Ranking: 5th

Lowest Ranking: 8th

Total Points: 50

Week 4 Result: Win @ Hamilton (29-25)

Next Game: Week 5 Vs. Calgary

With Tre Ford taking over the starting duties for the Edmonton Elks in their Canada Day clash against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, the entire country was rooting for Edmonton to upset the Cats, outside of Hamilton fans and Calgary Stampeders fans, of course. The Elks have shown in their three games since being thrashed by the BC Lions in week one that they are, if nothing else, a competitive team that is nowhere near as poor as they were in 2021. Say what you will about Hamilton and their implosion, Ford and the Elks took advantage and made the best of their opportunity, stealing a win in the doughnut box. It may not have been the most convincing win in Elks history, but you have to like the resilience of this team to hang in there and come out on top. Ford’s journey is certainly going to be a fun one to watch.

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7. Toronto Argonauts (1-2)

Week 3 Ranking: 7th

Highest Ranking: 4th

Lowest Ranking: 8th

Total Points: 49

Week 4 Result: Loss Vs. Winnipeg (23-22)

Next Game: Week 6 Vs. Saskatchewan

The one thought every person watching the Toronto Argonauts lose to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Monday night had was “wow, karma really is a thing.” Watching Boris Bede shank the extra point that would have tied the game with just over 20 seconds in the fourth quarter makes your skill crawl, but it can’t be worse than what Ryan Dinwiddie was feeling as he saw the ball sail wide left. Outside of the loss, the biggest story of this game was the fight on the sideline where, reportedly, a punch was thrown. Pinball Clemmons needed to come down to the sideline to help defuse the situation, but it doesn’t seem like the Argos are working. That fight shows that there could be off-field issues, and keeping those in check is critical. Brandon Banks did appear to make up with his offensive linemen later in the game with a hug, but it’s not a good look when something like that happens. Now we wait and see what happens with McLeod Bethel-Thompson.

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6. Montreal Alouettes (1-3)

Week 3 Ranking: 5th

Highest Ranking: 5th

Lowest Ranking: 8th

Total Points: 43

Week 4 Result: Loss @ Saskatchewan (41-20)

Next Game: Week 6 Vs. Edmonton

Coming off the high of taking down the Saskatchewan Roughriders last week, the Montreal Alouettes geared up for a second matchup in as many weeks, this time in the unfriendly confines of Mosaic Stadium in Regina. Through the first half of the game, the Alouettes looked like they had a good chance to pull off a second-consecutive win and send the home fans home concerned about the green and white, but they got in their own ways time and time again. You can complain about Al Bradbury and his crew all you want, the Alouettes took some incredibly selfish penalties that cost them fist fulls of yardage at a time, and even cost them players as Michael Wakefield was ejected from the game for his continuous scrapping with Riders’ offensive lineman Na’Ty Rodgers. They lost their focus in the second half, as the game changed from a football game to a street fight. On top of that, Trevor Harris’s performance didn’t spark much confidence, so the quarterback carousel continues.

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5. Ottawa Redblacks (0-3)

Week 3 Ranking: 6th

Highest Ranking: 5th

Lowest Ranking: 6th

Total Points: 39

Week 4 Result: Loss Vs. BC (34-31)

Next Game: Week 5 @ Saskatchewan

It isn’t just Tiger-Cats fans who are starting to get frustrated. The Ottawa Redblacks have started the season 0-3, and even though those three losses have come at the hands of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and BC Lions, that hasn’t been enough to ease the nerves for many fans. That being said, the two situations aren’t exactly similar. The Redblacks have the feeling of a team that could still break out, and the confidence is still there. Through their three games, their offence has struggled to score touchdowns, but that isn’t aided by playing a stout Winnipeg defence, and BC who had only allowed 18 points in their two previous games. Ottawa is a team that, right now, seems to be lacking that killer instinct. When they get down to the red zone, they need to leave with touchdowns, and they know that. If they do that, they will be fine, but until then, they can expect to struggle to pull themselves into the win column.

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4. Saskatchewan Roughriders (3-1)

Week 3 Ranking: 4th

Highest Ranking: 4th

Lowest Ranking: 5th

Total Points: 29

Week 4 Result: Win Vs. Montreal (41-20)

Next Game: Week 5 Vs. Ottawa

The Saskatchewan Roughriders are a very interesting case study this season. With Cody Fajardo in a pivotal season where he’s trying to convince the front office that he is capable of being their long-term option at quarterback, inexperience at the running back spot, and a defence that underwent some key changes in the offseason, some wondered exactly how they would shape up in 2022. So far, they haven’t looked like the Grey Cup contenders they are expected to be, but there’s plenty of time to get that sorted out. What has muddied the waters, however, is inconsistency. Are they the team that dominated the second half of the game against Montreal and handed a convincing beatdown to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in week one, or are they the team we saw in Montreal and who barely found a way to squeak past the Elks? Right now, they are 3-1, but they have only looked like the fourth-best team in the West Division this season. Injuries haven’t helped, but time will certainly let us know who these Riders really are.

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3. Calgary Stampeders (3-0)

Week 3 Ranking: 3rd

Highest Ranking: 2nd

Lowest Ranking: 3rd

Total Points: 18

Week 4 Result: BYE WEEK

Next Game: Week 5 @ Edmonton

Off the back of a bye week in week four, the Calgary Stampeders have a good chance to get themselves to 4-0 against the Edmonton Elks. Hitting that mark will be important, because they are about to embark on a stretch of games that could easily drop them all the way down to 4-4 if they aren’t careful. After their clash against the Elks in Edmonton, the Stamps go on the road to Winnipeg before another bye week in week seven. In week eight, they are right back at it against the Blue Bombers, this time at home. In week nine, they head to the nation’s capital to take on the Redblacks, and depending on how Ottawa looks then, that could provide a bit of a challenge. They wrap up this five-week stretch by hosting the BC Lions in week 10, but there is another matchup against the Blue Bombers to come in week 12, just days after the Stamps face the Toronto Argonauts. We think this Stampeders team is good, but we are really going to find out what they are made of between now and August 25th.

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2. BC Lions (3-0)

Week 3 Ranking: 2nd

Highest Ranking: 1st

Lowest Ranking: 3rd

Total Points: 13

Week 4 Result: Win @ Ottawa (34-31)

Next Game: Week 5 Vs. Winnipeg

Heading into the BC Lions’ matchup with the Ottawa Redblacks, fans and pundits alike were asking some questions. How would the Lions react to playing a better team? How would Nathan Rourke deal with adversity when it came his way? How would the Lions handle a game where everything wasn’t going their way? How would the Lions look away from BC Place? All of those questions proved to be worth nothing in week four, as the Rourke and the Lions took care of business, even without their number one receiver Bryan Burnham. While there are still going to be questions about what they look like against the top teams in the West Division, the Lions took yet another step toward becoming serious Grey Cup contenders by beating the Redblacks. If there was ever a CFL game that could be considered “must watch” this early in the season, it’s BC’s week five game against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. That is going to be a fun one.

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1. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (4-0)

Week 3 Ranking: 1st

Highest Ranking: 1st

Lowest Ranking: 3rd

Total Points: 11

Week 4 Result: Win @ Toronto (23-22)

Next Game: Week 5 @ BC

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers are 4-0. That is the good news. If you choose to ignore how they got there and look only at the record, you’re happy. But the Bombers haven’t been the same Bombers they have been since the end of the 2019 season. They don’t look like the runaway favourite for the Grey Cup, let alone the unstoppable juggernaut that they were in 2021. But we knew that would eventually end. We knew they would eventually come down to earth, and we knew that other teams around the league would catch up. But that catchup hasn’t stopped the Bombers from winning, and when push comes to shove, that’s all that matters. They are holding on to the slightest lead in these power ratings, but they are still here. They have been outplayed for about 10 of the 16 quarters of football they have played this season, but they are 4-0. That’s what matters. What we can say, however, is that whoever wins next week’s matchup between the Bombers and Lions will almost certainly be sitting at the top of our power rankings next week.


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