3DownNation power rankings: Riders rise to the top

The 3DownNation power rankings are back following the third week of the 2021 CFL season.

This week features a new team at the No. 1 spot, a rise from the province of Alberta, and the continued languishing of the Ottawa Redblacks. Eight of nine teams moved at least one spot this week, which is a testament to the unpredictability of the CFL season this far.

Our power rankings are created by having our contributors rank each team from No. 1 to No. 9 independently, then averaging out the scores. Last week’s rankings are listed in brackets.

Enjoy the rankings and feel free to roast us on Twitter for anything you feel we’ve got wrong.

Photo courtesy: Saskatchewan Roughriders

1. Saskatchewan Roughriders (2)

The Riders has finally risen all the way to the No. 1 spot, which is fitting considering they are the CFL’s only remaining undefeated team. Cody Fajardo is the early favourite to win Most Outstanding Player, the defence has done an excellent job applying pressure to opposing quarterbacks, and Rider Nation is over the moon. Corn dogs all around!

Photo courtesy: Bob Butrym

2. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (1)

Winnipeg’s two-week run at the top of our power rankings has come to an end after a disappointing performance at BMO Field. The team started the season with a dominant offensive performance along the ground but was unable to run the football in back-to-back games against the Argos.

Photo courtesy: Bob Butrym

3. Toronto Argonauts (5)

The Boatmen are rowing their way up the board following a big win over the previously undefeated Blue Bombers. Nick Arbuckle looked great in his first start of the season, DJ Foster had a breakout game, and the defence continues to make big plays in the form of sacks and takeaways.

Photo courtesy: Dominick Gravel/Montreal Alouettes

4. Montreal Alouettes (3)

The Larks fell one spot after a disappointing loss against a rookie quarterback making his first career CFL start. The receiving corps is talented but had far too many drops against the Stamps, while the defence gave up a handful of explosive plays. Williams Stanback is running the ball well but needs more touches to maximize his impact.

Photo courtesy: David Moll/Calgary Stampeders

5. Calgary Stampeders (7)

A big win over the Als prevented the Stamps from falling to 0-3 and moved them up our board by two spots. Jake Maier overcame two early interceptions to help secure the victory, though he’ll be in tough in Week 4 as Calgary travels to the unfriendly confines of IG Field in Winnipeg.

Photo courtesy: B.C. Lions

6. Edmonton Elks (9)

The Elks have broken out of the basement after shutting down B.C.’s offence on the road to secure their first win of the season. Edmonton finally got Greg Ellingson going after a slow start to the season with him making nine receptions for 148 yards, which is a bad sign for opposing defences.

Photo courtesy: Paul Yates/B.C. Lions

7. B.C. Lions (4)

The Leos failed to get a win for their new owner in their home opener with a disappointing offensive performance against the Elks. Michael Reilly threw for just 128 yards as the offence sputtered, averaging just 4.7 yards on second down and gaining 184 total yards in the loss.

Photo courtesy: Ticats.ca

8. Hamilton Tiger-Cats (6)

The Ticats continued to slide down our power rankings on their bye week, which indicates our voters do not have confidence they’ll bounce back following the time off. Hamilton visits the Alouettes for their home-opener this upcoming week as the team looks to get their first win of the season.

Photo courtesy of the Ottawa Redblacks

9. Ottawa Redblacks (9)

Ottawa’s offensive woes persisted following their Week 2 bye as Matt Nichols and co. struggled to move the football with any type of consistency. The defence is solid, but it’s becoming increasingly clear that our voters will not move the Redblacks up in these rankings until they’re able to score more points.

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