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AFL Power ranking round 4

1. Fremantle (last week: 1)
While the Dockers haven't moved a spot, we've got to admit when they were at No.1 last week we thought they were unstoppable, but Sydney proved it was possible to halt their midfield run on Saturday night, and we feel they are a lot closer to teams in the leading pack of contenders now.
2. Sydney (3)
Suffered their first loss for the year, but the manner in which they fought back from a 48-point deficit showed that they are still one of the most powerful teams in the competition. Sam Reid did an outstanding job, given licence to roam freely in the second half, and may keep Adam Goodes out of the side for longer than expected.
3. Port Adelaide (6)
The footy the Power produced in the first quarter against Hawthorn was eerily similar to their devastating display against Richmond in the elimination final last year – except for one massive difference, this was Hawthorn. Considering they did it without Ollie Wines and Robbie Gray in the side, the signs are looking very good for Port.
4. Hawthorn (5)
As much as we were blown away by Port Adelaide's blistering start, we were equally impressed with how the Hawks came back from a 58-point deficit to nearly snatch the most unlikely of victories. Their effort was especially impressive given they had lost Brian Lake early in the game and then also lost Paul Puopolo, leaving them short a rotation option.
5. Western Bulldogs (9)
Blew everyone away with their ferocious attack on the ball against the Crows on Sunday. Look a vastly improved outfit with Marcus Bontempelli back in the side, while Jake Stringer may have finally taken the next step after kicking half a dozen goals, although we may need to wait some time for confirmation as he left the field with a hamstring injury.
6. Adelaide (2)
THUD! That is the sound of the Crows falling back to earth after being humbled by the Bulldogs. In all honesty the reality check will definitely do the side good as they prepare for the biggest Showdown in years.
7. North Melbourne (7)
If Robbie Tarrant can stay injury free, he looks like he might turn into the promising player North Melbourne have always expected. He was outstanding against Geelong's Tom Hawkins, limiting his influence and also having a massive influence on the result with 23 disposals, nine marks and five rebound 50s.
8. Geelong (8)
We can hear the howls of protest already as we rank a 1-3 side ahead of several 3-1 sides, but can't help thinking the Cats could have improved their record had Chris Scott not decided to play Stevie J as the sub.
9. Collingwood (11)
There is no doubt Collingwood's young players definitely stood up on one of the biggest days of the AFL year, but we also can't help but point out that the conditions which brought their opponents' disposal efficiency somewhere near their level also played a big part. As it was, Collingwood still had the second-worst disposal efficiency for the round at 64.8 per cent, with only St Kilda performing worse.
10. Essendon (4)
Despite being close on the scoreboard, the Bombers never really looked in the contest against the Pies and questions will soon be asked about whether the two years of dealing with the ASADA saga are starting to take their toll.
11. Greater Western Sydney (12)
A quirk of the draw sees the Giants sitting in second position on the ladder. They are extremely impressive at the minute and we love watching them play, especially new star Cam McCarthy, but they are not quite that far advanced in their development.
12. Melbourne (13)
It has been so long since Melbourne fans have had genuine reason to be excited, but Jesse Hogan's performance against Richmond on Friday night suggested he could become the next big thing. He crashed into packs, took some brilliant marks and out-pointed an All Australian defender in Alex Rance. Demon fans may even cancel trips to the snow to watch this bloke play.
13. Richmond (10)
While the Tigers did beat Brisbane without Brett Deledio, we still stand by our claim that when he is missing they will continue to lose most of their games. When he returns, however, they are a different prospect altogether.
14. West Coast (14)
We object to people misappropriating the cricketing term flat-track bullies to describe the Eagles. That term is meant to refer to the pitch not the opponent. We prefer to think of West Coast as the vultures of the competition – they are all over sides that are figuratively dead or dying, but nowhere to be seen when there is live prey willing to put up a fight.
15. Carlton (18)
If this season is all about unearthing the players that are going to take the club forward into the future, the Blues look to have done that with Patrick Cripps having a break-out game, proving he was prepared to get his hands dirty under packs to get first hands on the ball.
16. St Kilda (16)
The good thing about playing their match against Carlton in New Zealand is that most St Kilda fans didn't have to turn up and watch it. On a serious note, they should at least be a lot more competitive for a lot longer when Nick Riewoldt and Leigh Montagna return to the side.
17. Brisbane Lions (15)
We thought Tom Rockliff's return to the side would make the Lions more competitive. We were wrong.
18. Gold Coast (17)
After putting up a fight against Geelong, things returned to normal for the Suns this week as they were outclassed by the Giants. The Q-clash this weekend to find out which side is really the worst team in Queensland promises to be one of the worst games of the season.

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