Draw for No. 1: winner of the first overall pick in the 2021 CFL Draft to be determined on TSN

Edited courtesy: Scott McEwen

The winner of the first overall pick in the 2021 CFL Draft will be determined on TSN Saturday night.

The three-letter network will include the draw as part of its Grey Cup Unite special which starts at 8 p.m. ET. The draw is set for approximately 8:30 p.m. ET.

Hamilton has a 22.2 percent chance of claiming the number one choice, seven other teams are at 11.1 percent and Montreal has no chance for the top slot due to the infamous Johnny Manziel trade. The draft order will be determined by a random draw that is equally weighted across the CFL teams except for the Ticats and Alouettes.


Teams traditionally pick eligible players in an order based on their records from the previous season with the team with the worst record choosing first, barring trades, to encourage parity. The 2020 CFL draft followed that traditional format, but the league did not stage a season this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2021 CFL draft will feature a “snake” format. This means that after teams pick in the first round, they will then pick in reverse order in the second round, and that pattern will continue. For example, the team that picks ninth in the first round will pick first in the second round.


Next year’s draft will be six rounds long instead of the traditional eight rounds. This is in recognition of the fact that 2021 CFL training camps will feature a “double cohort” of Canadian rookies, with a group from each of the 2020 and 2021 CFL drafts.

The 2021 CFL draft will be held next spring. The exact date has not yet been determined, although it usually follows the NFL draft which is currently scheduled for April 29 to May 1, 2021.

Justin Dunk is a football insider, sports reporter and anchor.