CFL teams to begin trimming rosters on Monday, releasing up to 25 players each

Photo courtesy: Scott Grant/

Expect to see a preliminary wave of cuts ripple across the country as CFL teams begin trimming their rosters ahead of the 2021 regular season.

According to the CBA that was amended for the upcoming fourteen-game season, all nine teams were permitted to have 100 players on the roster for the first ten days of training camp. Teams must reduce their rosters to 75 players plus non-counters following this ten-day period before a final cutdown day at the end of training camp.

A non-counter is any rookie who was drafted or attending training camp as a territorial exemption. Each team has a maximum of 15 non-counters, which means teams can keep up to 90 players following this preliminary cutdown provided all of their non-counters make the cut.

The number of non-counters in training camp is higher than normal this season because two national drafts have been held since the conclusion of the 2019 season.

Training camps officially opened on July 10, which means this ten-day window is set to expire shortly. Expect cuts to begin rolling in on Monday and continue as we get into Tuesday.

Active rosters will be made up of a minimum of 43 players and a maximum of 44 plus one reserve in 2021. Teams will dress only one global player — the minimum was two before the CBA was amended — and two quarterbacks. They can also choose to dress one fewer national player than is typically required.

Final cuts at the end of training camp will take place on Friday, July 30 with the regular season beginning on Thursday, August 5.

John Hodge is a Canadian football reporter based in Winnipeg.