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Piffles Podcast CFL Power Rankings (Alex’s Version)

Published: Tuesday, Feb 20th 2024, 7:02pm

By Alex Dormuth (@RealAlexD)

 

Normally I leave the Piffles Podcast Power Rankings to Steve (@Safimod), but today, I’m going to give my first rankings of the year across the CFL.

 

Free Agency had a few big time buyers (hello, Saskatchewan & Hamilton) and rosters are taking shape across the league. So, how do they rank right now?

 

 

1. Montreal Alouettes

“To be the man, WOOOO, you have to beat the man!” – Ric Flair

They are the Grey Cup Champions. This ranking could easily change in Week 1 of the season, but the defending champs will ALWAYS get #1 in my first rankings every year. They did a great job ahead of free agency to keep their big names on defense around and were able to get a few guys on offense to offset some losses.

 

2. Toronto Argonauts

Despite being a historically good team last year, when you are that good, everyone wants a part of you. I think the Argos have done a great job of scouting and bringing up new players over the last few years (and I expect that to happen again this year), they took a LOT of losses in free agency. I like Chad Kelly leading the team (I ate a ton of crow on him last year, happily, I might add) and I still think they finish first in the East, but it won’t be as easy as it was last year.

 

3. Winnipeg Blue Bombers 

Or should I say “Linnipeg” Blue Bombers? (Bomber fans, if you don’t get the joke, there is no hope for you…) The team is probably still the most well rounded in the league. They took a big hit in free agency, but they were able to keep a big portion of their top guys before free agency began. Do I expect them to be the best team in the West this year? Yes, but I think the gap between them and the rest is narrowing.

 

4. BC Lions

Like last year, the Lions are the clear 2nd best team in the West and have narrowed the gap on the Bombers. They got KILLED by the Bombers in the trenches in the West Final last year, so if they can’t shore that up, there’s no chance they can beat Linnipeg in the playoffs. Still, they are a pretty well rounded team and should hang with the top tier all season long.

 

 

5. Saskatchewan Roughriders

I LOVE what the Riders have done in free agency and this whole offseason. Getting their guy in Corey Mace is a huge upgrade over what they had last year and GM Jeremy O’Day addressed the biggest needs in free agency. At the VERY least, the Riders should be 100% more competitive than last year and should realistically challenge for 3rd in the West (and a crossover spot at the minimum). They just need QB1 Trevor Harris to stay healthy, because I don’t really like what’s behind him if he doesn’t.

 

6. Hamilton Tiger-Cats

Another team that HAD to go free agent shopping, the Ticats made a ton of moves, especially taking guys from down the QEW. Anyone that knows me knows I was a big Bo Levi Mitchell fan, but putting all your eggs in that basket again is a big risk. I don’t think he’s done, but he isn’t close to being what he once was and he won’t go out and win you games like he used to. They did get Tim White back in the receiving group, so I think they have the pieces to compete in the East Division… if the QB play is good. 

 

7. Edmonton Elks

I like some of what the Elks have done, but I don’t love it. McLeod Bethel-Thompson will keep them very competitive in games and year 3 of a Chris Jones team is the year you finally see what the team he’s built is… I’m just not sure it’s enough to jump into the playoffs just yet. But right now, I like them better than their provincial rivals.

 

8. Calgary Stampeders 

As long as Jake Maier is the QB in Calgary, they will be held back. He just isn’t it and I will not change my mind on that. I do like the Matthew Shiltz signing, but not much else the Stamps have done this offseason has impressed me. If they can find receivers that can catch a damn ball, they should be competitive enough to challenge for a playoff spot. They only made it into the dance last year because the Riders and Elks were completely inept.

 

9. Ottawa Redblacks

Usually Ottawa “wins” free agency and the optimism is sky high for them, only to come crashing down to earth early in the season. Until this team can prove they are anything more than the worst team in the league, they are the worst team in the league. A new QB gives hope, but I’ve seen this song and dance before out of the Nation’s Capital.

 

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