TORONTO — The CFL released its 2021 game schedule on Friday and like many things in our lives these days, it is not like anything we have seen before.
The most significant difference is the focus on divisional play.
Compared to previous years, there will be eight more divisional games. This means that although every team will play each other at least once, there will be some teams that will not travel to certain stadiums in 2021.
This not only places an emphasis rivalry games but limits certain cross-country travel. That said, depending on the scenario and team records, it could make certain matchups more meaningful in the push for the playoffs.
Look no further than the final week of the schedule that features two divisional matchups which could decide playoff seeding, with the Alouettes in Toronto and Edmonton visiting the Bombers.
Some of the staples of the traditional CFL schedule remain, however. The season will once again kick off with a Grey Cup rematch, the Labour Day matchups are all slated for rivals to pit against one another and there will be football on Thanksgiving Day.
The 2021 Canadian Football League schedule is out! Have a look at your team’s matchups by clicking here.
“We’re looking forward to hosting our comeback season in our stadiums, in front of our fans,” CFL Commissioner Randy Ambrosie said in a league-issued press release Friday. “With this schedule, we’re signalling that we’re looking forward with optimism to playing in 2021.”
Some additional notes from the 2021 schedule include:
- A rematch of the 2019 Grey Cup to kick off the regular season, with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats visiting the defending champion Blue Bombers on Thursday June 10.
- An additional divisional match-up per team to build regional rivalries while reducing travel for players.
- A full slate of classic match-ups on Labour Day Weekend, with the Montreal Alouettes visiting the Ottawa REDBLACKS on Friday September 3, the Bombers hosting the Saskatchewan Roughriders on Sunday, September 5, and a doubleheader on the holiday, Monday, September 6, with the Toronto Argonauts visiting Hamilton and the Edmonton Football Club visiting the Calgary Stampeders.
- Thanksgiving football is back on Monday, October 11 when the REDBLACKS visit the Alouettes.
- A regular season finale on Saturday, October 30 that features two divisional matchups which could decide playoff seeding, with the Alouettes in Toronto and Edmonton visiting the Bombers.
- Playoffs on Sunday, November 7 and Sunday, November 14 leading to the 108th Grey Cup in Hamilton on Sunday, November 21.
All games will be broadcast in Canada on TSN. Montreal Alouettes games and select CFL games will be also shown on RDS. CFL games are broadcast in the United States by ESPN.