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2021 NFL Power Rankings: Arizona Cardinals

Throughout the 2021 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Arizona Cardinals rank in terms of average, best and worst:

Below you will find a Week 11 roundup for the Cardinals in our consensus 2021 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 3

Most important remaining game: Dec. 13 vs. Rams

For all intents and purposes, this game will likely decide the NFC West. The division has turned into a two-team race between Arizona and the Rams, so a win by the Cardinals on a Monday night would go a long way toward giving them their first division title since 2015 -- which means at least one home playoff game. Three weeks later, Arizona will visit the Cowboys for a game that could determine the entire NFC. -- Josh Weinfuss

NFL.com -- Rank: 4

The Cardinals are doing the right thing. It might be painful in the short term, but it's the prudent move to keep Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins out of game action, even if it means ugly results like Sunday's 34-10 loss to the Panthers. Murray attempted to play through a lingering shoulder injury last December and Arizona's playoff hopes imploded. Giving Murray's ankle and Hopkins' hamstring the necessary time to heal will help the Cardinals in the long run as they attempt to make a deep playoff run. The team's 7-0 start to the season provided Kliff Kingsbury's team with some cushion. He's smart to use it now.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 4

Playing without Kyler Murray bled through to the entire team against Carolina. They were lifeless. They need him back in the worst way.

USA Today -- Rank: 4

Another helpful loss by the Rams might inform their decision to rest QB Kyler Murray and other gimpy players one more game with bye arriving during Thanksgiving week.

The Athletic -- Rank: 4

Steal a player: Vita Vea, Buccaneers nose tackle

Offense won't be a problem when Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins return. Pass defense has not been a problem in large part because of how well the Cardinals pressure the passer. They're eighth in the NFL in sacks (25). But run defense? That might be a problem. Arizona is last in the league, allowing 4.8 yards per carry. The Panthers rushed for 166 on Sunday. Adding the 350-pound Vea would help now and might help even more when the playoffs roll around.

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