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No matter the lopsided score or how many victories the Patriots have strung together during their magical history tour, Randy Moss knows what'll be on the menu at the team headquarters this week.
"Humble pie,'' the receiver said. "We're going to have humble pie every day we see Coach.''
For Moss, it was his way of referring to coach Bill Belichick's ever-demanding approach that keeps his players guessing and grounded in a season that appears destined for perfection.
As preposterous as it sounds, Moss insists New England has yet to play its best game even after a 56-10 win over the outmatched Buffalo Bills on Sunday night.
"Can we play better?'' Moss said. "Of course we can.''
Belichick, perhaps, would be the only one who would agree because, otherwise, there appears no stopping this group that has won 10 straight to open the year, nine by 17 points or more, and is on pace to become the first team to finish a season unbeaten since the 1972 Miami Dolphins.
The Patriots are doing it in such record-setting style that it's almost an afterthought to note that they're suddenly one win from clinching the title in the abysmal AFC East , and it's not even December yet.
By the time Moss headed into the locker room at halftime, the Patriots were up 35-7 and he had already scored four times to set a single-game franchise record. With 16 touchdowns, Moss now holds the record and is six short of the NFL record set by Jerry Rice in 1987.
By the time Tom Brady was pulled early in the fourth quarter, he had engineered scoring drives on each of his first seven possessions, had thrown five touchdown passes for the third time this year, and had 373 yards passing.
With 38 touchdowns passing already, Brady is 11 shy of the single-season record of 49 set by Peyton Manning in 2004.
"It's not a bad job,'' said cornerback Ellis Hobbs, who capped the rout by returning a fumble 35 yards for a score. "We have a lot of work to do. But we're moving in the positive direction.''
Tell that to the Bills (5-5), who were riding a four-game win streak and actually believed they might compete against New England.
That dream ended before the game was 16 minutes old. After J.P. Losman hit Roscoe Parrish for a 47-yard touchdown pass to cut New England's lead to 14-7, Brady responded by engineering an eight-play, 72-yard drive, capped by a 16-yard pass to Moss.
"They're a great football team,'' Bills safety Donte Whitner said. "I think they have the opportunity to go undefeated. We made some mistakes out there. And every mistake we made, they took advantage of it.''
The game wasn't yet over when Bills general manager Marv Levy, watching from the press box, praised the Pats by saying: "They are magnificent. They really are.''
The Patriots were eight-of-11 in third-down conversions. For good measure, they converted two fourth-down attempts, one on which Brady hit Benjamin Watson for a 3-yard touchdown pass early in the third quarter.
New England's offense was so superior that Chris Hanson didn't get a chance to punt until there was less than 4 minutes left.
The Patriots are now averaging 41 points and nearly 437 yards.
And don't forget their defense, which had four sacks, two turnovers and limited the Bills to 229 yards and 14 first downs.
"After coming off a bye week, you always want to come out and start fast,'' safety Rodney Harrison said. "Coach made analogies to come out and test the water, jump right in: And that's what we did.''
The Bills couldn't even draw inspiration from a videotaped message injured tight end Kevin Everett delivered on the video scoreboard prior to the game.
"How are you doing Buffalo? This is Kevin Everett,'' said Everett, who this past week was released from a Houston hospital 10 weeks since sustaining a severe spinal cord injury. "I just want to say, come on, let's beat the Patriots.''
This program aired on November 19, 2007. The audio for this program is not available.
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