The 3DownNation power rankings are back following the fifth week of the 2021 CFL season.
This week features a number of changes following a dramatic Labour Day Weekend that featured a pair of upsets and plenty of twists and turns. We have a new team in the top spot, two teams that leapt up three spots, and two teams that fell three spots. Oh my!
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 gotten wrong.
1. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (2)
The reigning Grey Cup champions have taken over the top spot after Willie Jefferson was proven right, defeating a Saskatchewan team that had yet to beat a contender. Winnipeg’s defence has allowed a league-low 67 points this season, which is remarkable considering they’ve played one more game than almost every other team in the league.
2. Saskatchewan Roughriders (1)
Cody Fajardo had the worst game of his career in the Labour Day Classic, throwing for 211 yards, zero touchdowns, and three interceptions. Some shine has come off Saskatchewan since their perfect 3-0 record was sullied, but there’s no reason to panic in Rider Nation as the club gets another crack at Winnipeg on Saturday.
3. Hamilton Tiger-Cats (4)
The Ticats have string back-to-back wins together, making everyone forget about their disastrous 0-2 start on the road. Dane Evans has settled in nicely as the team’s starting quarterback, while the return of Ted Laurent, Dylan Wynn, and Ja’Gared Davis along the defensive line should have opposing offences worried.
4. Montreal Alouettes (7)
It may have come against Ottawa, but the Als got back to their winning ways in Week 5 by putting up a season-high 51 points. Vernon Adams Jr. looked dominant as he used his arm and his legs to make plays, while the defence chased Matt Nichols from the game following an interception.
5. Edmonton Elks (8)
What a difference a week makes! The Elks had their Week 4 game against Toronto postponed after 13 players tested positive for COVID-19. Despite being without four starters, Edmonton went into Calgary and won the Labour Day Classic for the first time since 2011.
6. Toronto Argonauts (3)
Some shine has come off Nick Arbuckle after he threw for just 207 yards and two interceptions against the Ticats on Monday. Toronto’s defence looked vulnerable, allowing a 57-yard touchdown pass to Tim White, while the cover teams allowed Frankie Williams to bring a punt back all the way to the house.
7. B.C. Lions (6)
The Leos fell one spot while on their bye week, which might be a little unfair. The good news is that this team have a good chance to move back up the rankings as they enter Week 6 rested with a date at home against the lowly Redblacks.
8. Calgary Stampeders (5)
How the mighty have fallen! Trevor Harris lit up Calgary’s defence for 398 yards and four touchdowns in the Labour Day Classic, while the offence struggled to finish drives. The Stamps have widely been considered the CFL’s model franchise for over a decade, but the team is in uncharted territory with a 1-4 record at the bottom of the West Division.
9. Ottawa Redblacks (9)
Ottawa’s defence was supposed to be its strength, but allowing 51 points against the Montreal Alouettes has called that into question. Dominique Davis provided a spark after he replaced Matt Nichols, but this team still has a long way to go if they hope to escape the cellar of these rankings and/or the East Division standings.