CFL Power Rankings: Week 3 | Football | CBC Sports

CFLCFL Power Rankings: Week 3

Posted: Monday, July 14, 2014 | 10:41 AM

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B.C. Lions running back Andrew Harris has helped catapult his club up this week's power rankings. (Brent Just/Getty Images) B.C. Lions running back Andrew Harris has helped catapult his club up this week's power rankings. (Brent Just/Getty Images)

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Once a week, Malcolm Kelly breaks down the balance of power in the Canadian Football League.

CBC Sports football contributor Malcolm Kelly breaks down the balance of power in the Canadian Football League on a weekly basis:

1. EDMONTON ESKIMOS[Unchanged]
Overall record: 3-0
Streak: Won 3
Next: At WPG

If you wanted to prepare a presentation on "How to Beat an Expansion Team with Dreams of Grandeur," this week's victory by the Eskimos over Ottawa might be it. Mike Reilly hit on 22 passes for 256 yards and three scores, all to Adarius Bowman, who was fabulous all night. RB John White ran for 99 and Reilly added 48 of his own. There were no turnovers. Small complaint -- all of the good stuff was in the second half (another case of a team getting a look at the Redblacks defence for the first time?) Almondo Sewell led the defence with three sacks out of five total, and they had Ottawa's number all game, but for one long play. Head coach Chris Jones has this club singing from the same sheet of music - Don't Stop Believing. This week they run into another choir singing the same song.
2. CALGARY STAMPEDERS [Unchanged]
Overall record: 2-0
Streak: Won 2
Next: Home to HAM

You build depth, you build a winner. That was on display in Toronto when the White Stallions came in without star RB Jon Cornish and two starting receivers. No problem. Next man up was Anthony Parker, the Calgary Dinos grad, who caught four balls including the back end of a neat flea flicker for a TD. And second-year man Jeff Fuller had five grabs and two scores from Bo Levi Mitchell. Defensively, the Stamps chased Ricky Ray around all night, but they may have lost two of three starting LBs in the process. Here's effective coaching: Stamps had seven penalties in the first half, received a talking to during intermission, and saw only one flag in the second 30 minutes. Rene (Mr. Automatic) Parades missed two field goals. CFL stat guy Steve Daniel said that's the first time in 53 games he's done that.
3. WINNIPEG BLUE BOMBERS[Unchanged]
Overall record: 3-0
Streak: Won 3
Next: Home to EDM

Let's sing a song of Julian Feoli-Gudino, the handsome young former Laval star with the flowing locks who spent two years in Toronto mostly on special teams or the practice roster. Caught one pass. He followed head coach Mike O'Shea from the Double Blue this off-season and has found a place. (This is the danger of having your coaches hired by other clubs, by the way - they know what great youngsters are being hidden). He caught four balls including the winner from Drew Willy. Sometimes you can win games by having the other team make even more mistakes than you did. Such as this one. The defence gave up almost 400 yards. Returner Demond Washington fumbled twice and almost gave the game away. But the Bombers found a route to victory as young Willy continues to impress with his stiff upper lip approach to trouble.
4. B.C. LIONS[Up from 8]
Overall record: 1-2
Streak: Won 1
Next: Home to MTL

Andrew Harris's 58-yard touchdown run in the first half at Regina not only embarrassed would-be tackler Weldon Brown (bet film study was fun this week), it also confirmed, again, why the B.C. back is a wonderful player. Strength, yes. Agility, yes. Speed, yes. But what you have to respect is his competitive nature, his willingness to play hard every down, circumstances be damned. Harris finished with 18 carries for 138 yards, leading the Lions to a crucial early season victory after two defeats. They looked good doing it, too. The running game was so strong it took pressure off Kevin Glenn, who completed 16 for 170 yards, one TD and zero picks. A whopping 250 total return yards were also key. On the other side, 13 penalties were simply silly. Stop it.
5. SASKATCHEWAN ROUGHRIDERS[Down from 4]
Overall record: 1-2
Streak: Lost 2
Next: BYE

Two losses in a row, and neither a good effort, has the good Patrons of Piffles Taylor Way wondering where did the Grey Cup champs go? Some of it went to the NFL, some of it retired and some went to other teams, but worry not. They'll be fine by season's end. That doesn't excuse the Riders for their second lousy outing, however. RB Hugh Charles coughed one up at the end of the second quarter and, despite rumbling for 86 yards on just 13 carries, he never saw the field again the rest of the game. Apparently coach Corey Chamblin thinks his team is still so good he can take out a key player to make a point and still win. No, you can't. That's not Kory Sheets and Jock Sanders back there. Zero points in the second half. Special teams giving up too many return yards. Great timing for a bye. This will come together. Trust me.
6. TORONTO ARGONAUTS [Down from 5]
Overall record: 1-2
Streak: Lost 1
Next: At OTT

Are these guys trying for the all-time penalty record? After committing a breathtaking 22 in Week 1, eight in Week 2, the Double Blue put up 17 against Calgary this time. For gosh sakes, that's 47 in 180 minutes of football. This defence has now been awful, excellent and pretty bad in three outings, but LB Shea Emry says not to worry as they're still getting used to each other. In five minutes during the first half, the Argos were caught by a huge flea-flicker touchdown, and then gave up a monster 121-yard return of a missed field goal that led to another score. The secondary is getting beaten regularly. Somehow, despite wanting to trade field goals for touchdowns all day, this club was still in it at the half until a seven-play Stamps scoring drive to open the third ended all hope. Ricky Ray and the offence were moving the ball (445 yards) but couldn't break through for a key counter.
7. MONTREAL ALOUETTES [Down from 6]
Overall record: 1-2
Streak: Lost 1
Next: Home to WPG

Popular topic at the Calgary-Toronto game was what happened to poor Chip Cox on Winnipeg's winning score with 29 seconds on the clock. The Larks' linebacker was left alone on an island there, with Feoli-Gudino zipping right down the middle to make a fine catch to ruin Marc Trestman Returns night at McGill. Of course, none of this would have mattered if Geoff Tisdale had caught that easy pick two plays before. Good teams find ways to win, mediocre ones find ways to lose. QB Troy Smith is still working things out and is still really a rookie. He's getting closer. Chad Johnson hauled in his first TD and celebrated by hugging the side judge, but it was his only catch of the night. To make Johnson truly effective, they need to get Duron Carter back from injury so there are similar threats on both sides of the field. Great news: GM Jim Popp re-signed for three more seasons.
8. OTTAWA REDBLACKS [Down from 7]
Overall record: 0-2
Streak: Lost 2
Next: Home to TOR

Was chatting with a long-tenured defensive coach this week about the Ottawa offence and he wasn't a bit surprised by what he's seen. If Le Rouge et Noir are going to score, it's mostly going to be on great individual efforts, such as Chevon Walker's 65-yarder against Edmonton in the first half. The offensive players, he said, simply don't know each other well enough yet, so there's no instinctive movement between them. It will happen, in time. He also believes QB Henry Burris can win five games by himself, if he stays healthy. The defence had two sacks, and hustled around, but they are already showing themselves to be vulnerable in the secondary, especially to big plays. There seems to be a bit of a speed deficiency there as well. This week is the home opener celebration - expect everyone on this club to play 20 per cent over their talent level.
9. HAMILTON TIGER-CATS [Unchanged - BYE]
Overall record: 0-2
Streak: Lost 2
Next: At CGY

QB Zach Collaros is out for this week's game, so the ball goes to either Jeremiah Masoli or Dan LeFevour. Thinking of the 14 sacks the Kitties have given up in two games, either man will need flak jacket protection considering the opponent is Calgary with its outstanding defence. Cutting down on penalties will help. This is a tough time for the Cats, starting with two losses, losing their QB, having the first two home games moved to teeny tiny Ron Joyce Stadium and having to go play the White Stallions. Funny things happen to pro athletes at times like this - they tend to take things personally. Don't be surprised if the Kitty Cats come out looking like Tigers in Alberta.

Follow Malcolm Kelly on Twitter @sportsnag

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