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Patriots.com News Blitz - 12/6/2007

Joe Namath he ain't.

But that didn't stop a Pittsburgh Steelers player from guaranteeing to reporters that his team would knock off the undefeated New England Patriots this Sunday -- on the road, no less, from which all three of their losses this season have come.

"Now we have our swagger back on defense and we're playing great ball, and they're playing great on the offensive side, too," second-year safety Anthony Smith said of the Steelers. "I think we have a real good chance to win the game and we will win the game."

Another Steeler is equally unimpressed with the Pats. Of his team's recent woes against New England, DL Casey Hampton had this to say to the Pittsburgh media.

"Ain't nothing to figure out. I mean, y'all saw the games. Couple times we threw a couple interceptions. Special teams didn't play well a couple of times. Those things happen. This time's an entirely different time."

Soooo?

After watching the Patriots in person Monday night in Baltimore, former Miami Dolphins coach Don Shula, who guided the only modern-day NFL team ever to go undefeated, believes the Pats have a chance to rival his old team's historic mark.

"The Patriots are 12-0 now and they've won games all kinds of ways," Shula told FOXSports.com. "They've won in blowout fashion and they've won tight games. They do everything you have to do to continue to win. They're strong in every department."

As for his Dolphins, who are on their way to a winless season, he said, "I just feel bad for everybody that's connected. I know Wayne [Huizenga, Miami's owner] wants to win in the worst way and [head coach] Cam Cameron does, too. The players certainly don't want this hanging over them. I just hope between now and the end of the season they can get it together and give some hope for the future."

QUICK HITS

Monday night's Patriots win was the highest-rated broadcast in cable TV history.

Bill Belichick had nothing but positive things to say about this week's opponent during his conference call with reporters Wednesday, a day off from practice for the Pats due to the Monday night game.

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