Heading into the 20th week of the CFL season, the Calgary Stampeders lost again, the Saskatchewan Roughriders continue to improve under Chris Jones and the Montreal Alouettes continue to limp to the finish line.
Here’s my take on how I’d currently rank the nine CFL franchises based on recent form.
1. Edmonton (11-6)
Edmonton has now won four straight and is the hottest team heading towards the playoffs. After beating Calgary would anybody be surprised if Edmonton extended its winning streak to eight and won its second Grey Cup in three years?
2. Calgary (13-3-1)
Calgary has lost two straight. It has wrapped up first place in the West so the result was meaningless. The many dropped balls are concerning but receivers Marquay McDaniel and Marken Michel should be back by the West final which will rectify that.
3. Winnipeg (11-6)
The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have lost three of their last four games. Matt Nichols and Andrew Harris were both lost to leg and concussion injuries respectively and will be needed if Winnipeg is going to make a long post-season run.
4. Saskatchewan (10-7)
Saskatchewan will be scary in the playoffs if it gets big performances from players who have been written off. Trent Richardson lived up to the hype, rushing 20 times for 127 yards and his first two CFL touchdowns against Montreal. Chad Owens found the fountain of youth at the age of 35, and looked like Chad Owens, catching nine passes for 114 yards and a TD. The biggest off-field surprise was the 30,083 in attendance which constituted the first non-sellout at 33,350-seat capacity Mosaic Stadium.
5. Ottawa (8-9-1)
Ottawa’s regular season ended with a win over Hamilton. It’ll sit out the last week of the regular season and watch to see if it hosts the East final or semifinal.
6. Toronto (8-9)
Ottawa’s comeback win over Hamilton has put the pressure back on the Toronto Argonauts. Toronto has to beat or tie B.C. on the road to get a bye to the East final.
7. British Columbia (7-10)
The Lions played spoiler, upsetting the Blue Bombers this week. They can do the same to the Argonauts this week. B.C. ended a five-game losing streak and has now won the season series versus Winnipeg.
8. Hamilton (5-12)
With another late-game loss, Hamilton is now 5-4 under June Jones after being 0-8 under Kent Austin. The Tiger-Cats finish their season Friday hosting Montreal in the sadness bowl.
9. Montreal (3-14)
The Alouettes have racked up a franchise-record 10 straight losses. Montreal is expected to sit its many veterans in its final game of the season and get a look at which depth players can be part of the future.