Hamilton, ON (SportsNetwork.com) - With just two weeks remaining in the CFL's regular season, several teams clinched playoff berths, one team probably blew a chance for a possible first-place finish, and for the long-suffering fans of another team, a long season is over.
The power rankings:
1. Calgary Stampeders (13-3) - It was more of the same from the Stampeders, who beat Edmonton, 27-13, Friday night. With the win, the Stamps clinched a home playoff berth. Quarterback Kevin Glenn, who completed 16 of 26 passes for 237 yards and one touchdown, had another productive night. Jon Cornish continues his outstanding play, rushing for 145 yards, which gives him 452 yards and three touchdowns in the last three games. The Stamps are hitting on all cylinders and are the class of the league right now.
2. Saskatchewan Roughriders (11-5) - The Riders clinched a home playoff game in beating the BC Lions, 35-14. Kory Sheets was back to his old self with 23 rushes for 144 yards and one touchdown. The Roughriders next head to Calgary in a crucial matchup that will have major implications on the fate of the West Division.
3. Toronto Argonauts (10-6) - The Argos scored an ugly, 26-20 win over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers to clinch a home playoff berth. But, in the words of head coach Scott Milanovich, "We're not playing our best football - clearly - and we need to make improvements if we're going to do anything come November." Quarterback Ricky Ray didn't have one of his stellar games, completing 20-of-33 pass attempts for 215 yards and one touchdown while being intercepted once. After an impressive run of four wins on the road, they're regressing a bit. If the Argos continue their slow starts, it may be a hard habit to break as they head into the playoffs.
4. BC Lions (9-7) - Not the usual Lions team we're used to after watching them self-implode against Saskatchewan. Three lost fumbles, four pass interceptions and 28 unanswered points all led to the loss to the Lions. They play the Eskimos Friday night, so that should help them get back on track.
5. Hamilton Tiger-Cats (8-8) - Once again, the Tiger-Cats can't stay over the .500 mark after getting pummelled, 36-5, in Montreal A team that beat the Argos twice and was breathing down Toronto's neck in a battle for first place may have blown a chance to finish first. After being dominated on both sides of the line, with terrible special teams coverage, it means at best they'll probably finish second. Unless, of course, they lose their next game, ironically at home to Montreal.
6. Montreal Alouettes (7-9) - Former Heisman Trophy winner Troy Smith looked like he's the heir apparent to Anthony Calvillo as he ran and threw almost at will against the Hamilton defense in the win. The Als defense, which has been their strength all year, dominated Hamilton. All of a sudden, those who were counting the Als out may have to re-think that. Remember the adage ... defense wins championships.
7. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (3-13) - Not much to say, but there's a lot of questions to ask. The Blue Bombers were eliminated from the postseason after the loss to Calgary. Some of those questions: how do you sell the 2014 season to a fan base that has seen its team miss the playoffs four out of the last five seasons, who will be the GM, who will be the head coach, who will be the quarterback?
8. Edmonton Eskimos (3-13) - It's a similar story in Edmonton. How soon after the season does general manager Ed Hervey make a decision on head coach Kavis Reed? Will free agents look with favor at going to Edmonton, or will they avoid the Eskimos all together? Much like Winnipeg, it's going to be an interesting offseason in Edmonton.
Ted Michaels is the host of the Fifth Quarter on AM900 CHML.