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NFL Power Rankings: Vikings Move On Up

The Vikings are on to Week 4 of the 2019 season.

Minnesota defeated the Oakland Raiders behind a strong rushing attack, dominant defensive performance and solid special teams on Sunday at U.S. Bank Stadium.

The Vikings will look to win a big divisional game against the Chicago Bears on Sunday at Soldier Field, where Minnesota has won just twice in its past 11 games.

The experts released their Power Rankings lists heading into Week 4.

Here's a look at where the Vikings rank:

9 (Up 1 Spot): Dan Hanzus – NFL.com

[Dalvin Cook] set a franchise record with his third consecutive 100-yard game to start the season in an easy 34-14 win over the Raiders. Minnesota is averaging 193.7 yards per game on the ground and has rolled up more yards rushing than passing during its 2-1 start. Cook is the unquestioned star of the attack, but he's not alone. Alexander Mattison has shown excellent burst when given the opportunity; a 10-yard touchdown run was an impressive feat of athleticism by the third-round rookie. The middling Raiders provided a perfect get-right opponent for [Kirk] Cousins, who bounced back with a solid effort after an alarming performance last week in Green Bay.

6 (Up 5 Spots): Frank Schwab – Yahoo Sports

The Vikings beat bad teams and don't beat good teams. That's the pattern in the Kirk Cousins era. We can't be sure if the Bears are good or not, but a game at Chicago will test that pattern.

12 (Same Spot): Pete Prisco – CBS Sports

They can run it and play good defense. That's the Mike Zimmer way. But they have to get more from their passing game.

11 (Up 3 Spots): NFL Staff – Bleacher Report

Week 3 Result: Won vs. Oakland 34-14

The Minnesota Vikings we saw Sunday are the team everyone expected to be a legit Super Bowl contender last year.

Granted, the team's Week 3 opponent was rather ungood, but the Vikings performed well in just about every phase of the game. Dalvin Cook continued his red-hot start to the season, rushing for 110 yards and a score. Kirk Cousins didn't post big numbers, but he was efficient and took care of the football. The Minnesota defense piled up four sacks and gave up just 302 yards of offense.

The question now is whether the Vikings can do it consistently. They looked great in pounding the Atlanta Falcons in Week 1 but came out flat in Week 2 against the Green Bay Packers and fell behind 21-0.

The Vikings had all kinds of trouble with their rivals in Chicago last year—coming out strong at Soldier Field in Week 4 would go a long way toward allaying concerns about whether Minnesota is the real deal and ready to contend in the NFC North.

(Up 3 Spots): MMQB Staff – Sports Illustrated

Previous rank: 10

Points in poll: 263

Highest-place vote: 5 (3 voters)

Lowest-place vote: 13 (1 voters)

Last week's result: Beat Oakland, 34-14

This week: at Chicago

Dalvin Cook has rushed for at least 110 yards in each of the first three games. He'll be tested against that Bears front on Sunday.

7 (Up 2 Spots): Vinnie Iyer – Sporting News

The Vikings will be fine in any game when they can go crazy running with Dalvin Cook and Alexander Mattison while their defense shuts down its opponent before garbage time. At some point, however, their playoff worthiness needs to be determined by Kirk Cousins.

7 (Down 4 Spots): Nate Davis – USA TODAY Sports

On pace for 2,000 yards, Dalvin Cook is the best back in league right now — which is nice considering what he dealt with during his first two years.

8 (Up 3 Spots) Courtney Cronin -– ESPN.com

What we got wrong: That Stefon Diggs would be the catalyst for an explosive passing attack.

We knew the Vikings would emphasize running the ball this season, but who would've thought Diggs would have only six catches for 101 yards and a touchdown through three games? The star wideout has been virtually a nonfactor, which isn't a knock on him but rather a byproduct of the way things have played out in an offense where receiver usage is down and running back production is way, way up.

8 (Up 4 Spots)  Kevin Cole and Timo Riske -– Pro Football Focus

It's been an up-and-down year for the Vikings, hitting the positive outcome last week at home against the Raiders. Despite the dominant victory, the Vikings don't move up as much as some others considering the opponent and being at home. Kirk Cousins has been the weak link so far, having graded as the 32nd-ranked passer of 37 with at least 50 dropbacks.

8 (Up 2 Spots)  Mike Florio -– Pro Football Talk

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