Now that they've hurdled their toughest opponent so far, the New England Patriots' quest for a perfect season not only remains intact, it's gaining steam ... in the media, at least.
FOXSports.com did some number-crunching to find out the probability of New England going 16-0 in the regular season. The odds, apparently, are on the Pats' side.
"In the analysis, New England wins more than 80 percent of the time," the website article says, "and is at least a 15-point favorite in every game. This means that the Patriots have a 55.3 percent chance of going undefeated for the 2007 regular season."
Only one team in modern NFL history has gone through a season undefeated: the 1972 Miami Dolphins. The coach of that team, the now-retired Don Shula, was quoted this week as saying that if the '07 Pats run the table, their season will be "tainted" by the videotaping scandal that surfaced after Week 1.
"We've been accused of being angry old men" Shula told a Florida newspaper when asked about his former team's desire to be the only undefeated team in league annals.
"We'll be watching with a great deal of interest," he added. But, to be fair, he also noted that "[Bill] Belichick is a great coach," and that "[Tom] Brady is a great quarterback."
Some NFL observers now believe the next team that could give New England a scare would be the Pittsburgh Steelers.
But The Sporting News gives three compelling reasons why the Steelers won't have a chance when they visit Gillette Stadium in December. Here's the first reason:
I don't see it. First off, it's at Foxborough. Remember, the Steelers lost at Arizona and at Denver, both now 3-5 teams. Overall, they have one victory over a team that's above .500 -- the 5-3 Browns, who are much different team than the Week 1 version, who happen to play at Pittsburgh this week.
But, in an apparent effort to be fair and balanced, the same magazine offers another feature with a differing opinion.
What are the chances New England will get more of its remaining games moved to prime time? USA TODAY sorts out the scheduling possibilities in a story today.
The Indianapolis media is still focusing on the extra noise controversy from Sunday's game with the Pats.
There's a great story in today's Boston Globe on a woman who counsels Patriots players and their wives on faith, marriage, and family. Here's a hint: she's the wife of a former Patriot, and mother to two NFL QBs.