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Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Power Rankings: No. 25 Arizona Cardinals

By Josh Weinfuss

A weekly examination of the Cardinals' ESPN.com Power Ranking:

Preseason: 26 | Last Week: 26 | ESPN.com Power Ranking since 2002

Moving up one spot doesn’t seem like much, but it’s progress for this Arizona Cardinals team, especially considering they gave up an 11-point lead and eventually lost 27-24 to the St. Louis Rams.

Even in defeat, the Cardinals showed they’re not your typical Cardinals of the past few seasons. They have a drastically improved offense that’s ranked 10th after one game -- Arizona was dead last after 2012. Just look at Larry Fitzgerald's two touchdown passes from Carson Palmer. The Cardinals' defense, which struggled with its pass rush, is 17th heading into Week 2. Obviously, a win would have been a better start. But considering it was the first game in a new system, under new coaches, and with half of a new roster, there was going to be an adjustment period. A team can only jell so much during the offseason, training camp and preseason.

The Cardinals needed Week 1 to see what this Bruce Arians thing was all about. Now that they know, and especially now that the returners from last year’s 5-11 team can feel confident with a legitimate quarterback, next week's matchup against Detroit should be something to watch.