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NFL power rankings, week 4: Cardinals crack top 10

The Arizona Cardinals have ridden a dominant defense to the upper echelon of the NFL. With a favorable schedule approaching, they have a chance to stay there for quite some time.

Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

The Arizona Cardinals are no longer a team on the rise. They have risen and are a consensus top 10 team in the NFL and a contender for the NFC West crown with the San Francisco 49ers and the up-and-coming Seattle Seahawks. The Cardinals are one of only three remaining undefeated teams, and there's no telling when the streak might end. The Power Rankings recognized and rewarded them for that.

SB Nation moved the Cardinals from No. 16 to No. 9, eventually deciding on the placement due to the Cardinals' upcoming schedule and the opportunity for them to do that much more damage in the weeks ahead.

With Miami, St. Louis, Buffalo and Minnesota all coming before a Monday Night Football clash with the 49ers, the Cardinals have a legit shot at being 7-0 heading into that game.

ESPN moved the Cardinals from No. 14 to No. 9 and gave the surprising Cardinals props for their first 3-0 start since 1974.

CBS Sports ranked the Cardinals the highest, moving them from No. 9 to No. 3. Simply put: "They are legit. That defense is special." Just ask the Patriots and Eagles.

For more on the Cardinals, check out Revenge of the Birds.