CFL Week 5 Rankings With A Twist: AND A Tip Of The Cap To John Lynch

Week 5 in the Canadian Football League was the week of the back-up with half of the team’s in the league turning to their second-string pivot. Most looked very good which as most pundits point out will make from some interesting decisions for the Ottawa REDBLACKS prior to their expansion draft in December.

So before we get to this week’s Power Rankings here’s a quick look at my depth chart of back-up pivots in the Canadian Football League. First though, I have to give full credit to the ultimate Rider Insider John Lynch who picked the top back-up on the CJWW Rider Pre-Game show last Saturday.

Have a listen:|titles=John
  1. John Lynch Calls It —

Now here is my ranking of pivots that have played this season in the CFL.

1 – Kevin Glenn – Calgary Stampeders. It still reads on the Stamps website that Glenn is second on the depth chart behind Drew Tate. I could see those roles reversing before the end of the season. However, there are teams in the CFL that would LOVE to have Glenn under centre for them.

2 – Bo Levi Mitchell – Calgary Stampeders. The kids obviously has all of the tools and at age 23 the sky’s the limit for the Stamps third stringer.

3 – Zack Collaros – Toronto Argonauts. Obviously, a limited body of work to judge this on, however, he did make a very good BC defence look very bad.

4 – Drew Willy – Saskatchewan Roughriders. Willy shredded a bad defence in Hamilton, however, the Ti-Cats were sending the heat on a number of occasions but Willy was able to pick it up and make plays downfield.

5 – Kerry Joseph – Edmonton Eskimos. While the Eskies are no longer his team per say the calming influence and mentorship that Joseph can provide to Mike Reilly is invaluable and puts him at number five on the list.

6 – Matt Nichols – Edmonton Eskimos. Despite only appearing in one pre-season game one has to consider his body of work from last season. He does a lot of things right. If he can stay healthy he may off the Eskimos a nice one-two punch in the future.

7 – Justin Goltz – Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Fortunately for Goltz he has had much more time to play in Winnipeg than either Collaros, or Willy. He has shown glimpses of brilliance but he has yet to be able to come in and supplant oft injured Buck Pierce. His opportunities to do that may be running out.


Now to my week five power rankings:

1 Saskatchewan Roughriders: (5-0 LW: 32-20 win at Hamilton)–(Last Week Rank #1 [4th Week In  A Row])

The Green and White continue to roll along. The receving arsenal that the Rider pivots have at their disposal appears to be tops in the league despite Calgary’s use of double digit receivers in their past two games. However, the Rider ‘O’ continues to maintain possession of the ball (no turnovers through 5 weeks) and the  ‘D’ continues to bend but not break with some terrific in-game adjustments being made. Big test for the Green and White though when they head to Calgary after their bye week.

2 Calgary Stampeders: (4-1 LW: 37-24 win at Winnipeg) – (Last Week Ranking #3)

The Stamps looked very, very good in a win in Winnipeg in week 5. Bo Levi Mitchell shredded a Winnipeg defence that the Bomber’s boast as their strength. The Calgary ‘D’ still struggles at times but they are going to have a chance to make a statement at home to Saskatchewan in week 7.

3 B.C. Lions: (3-2 LW: 38-12 loss at Toronto) – (Last Week Ranking #2)

Did B-C take Toronto too lightly or are the Argos a team that is starting to gel? That’s the big question which I am going to answer with the B-C Lions underestimated their opponent in week 5. Yes Manny Arsenault being out of the Lions line-up was big as was the loss of a very impressive young O-lineman early on in the game. The Lions though did not look in sync. They will have a chance to rebound in week 6 against a struggling Winnipeg Blue Bomber team at home. That is if they come mentally prepared to play.

4 Toronto Argonauts: (3-2 LW: 38-12 win vs. B-C) – (Last Week Ranking #4)

The Argos showed a lot in a dominant victory over the B-C Lions last night. The defence who has been exploited in consecutive weeks stepped up and the offence didn’t miss a beat under the direction of Zack Collaros. The Argos are returning to the form that saw them win the 100th Grey Cup.

5 Montreal Alouettes: (2-3 LW:32-27 win vs. Edmonton ) – (Last Week Ranking #5)

A win is a win for the beleaguered Als who have been anything but consistent. Can they use the win to propel them to a higher level? Time will tell but I believe that they have the talent to get the job done, now if the team can stay on the same page as the coaching staff they Als could return to the upper echelon of the league.

6 Winnipeg Blue Bombers (1-4 LW: 37-24 loss vs.Calgary) – (Last Week Ranking #7)

Not often a loss can move you up in the rankings, however, despite a loss to Calgary and their third string quarterback I did see a glimmer of hope from quarterback Justin Goltz and the Bomber offence. The defence on the other hand has been torn apart by opposing QB’s in two straight weeks. The ‘D’ needs to continue to dominate like they did in the first three weeks if they want to move up the rankings.

7 Edmonton Eskimos: (1-4 LW 32-27 loss at Montreal) – (Last Week Ranking #6)

The Eskimos continue to spin their wheels. The Als were ripe for the picking but the Eskimo defence couldn’t stop Jamal Richardson, and SJ Green or score a late touchdown when the opportunity presented itself. Getting into scoring position late in the game was a big plus the lack of clock management and consistency throughout the 60 minutes is still a work in progress. It may be a toss up on this list between Edmonton and Winnipeg. The Bombers won that toss this week.

8 Hamilton Tiger Cats (1-4 LW: 32-20 loss vs. Saskatchewan) – (Last Week Ranking #8)

Things have gone from bad to worse. A young team struggling to find an identity appeared to have sorted things out before a rash of injuries took out a veteran in the secondary, a pair of running backs and the leader along their offensive line and had the team in disarray in the final three quarters against the Riders. GM and Head Coach Kent Austin was clearly frustrated following the contest and it’s going to get tougher to turn the ship around. A trip to Edmonton in week 6 may be what the doctor ordered and at very least provide a measuring stick against another young team.

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