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Bob Glauber's NFL hot reads

Mr. Rodgers in his own neighborhood

Aaron Rodgers has a very simple way of approaching the idea of an unbeaten season. At 9-0, the Packers quarterback looks at each game as its own miniature season.

"We try to go 1-0 every week," Rodgers said. "We've got nine of them banked, and we're going to try to get 10 this Sunday."

The Packers haven't shied away from pursuing the feat accomplished only by the 2007 Patriots, who became the first team to finish a 16-game season unbeaten. Up next: Tampa Bay at home, where the Packers are coming off a 45-7 rout of the Vikings.

The ultimate goal, of course, is 19-0, a record that has never been achieved. The Patriots wound up 18-1 after losing to the Giants in Super Bowl XLII.

If Green Bay gets there, it will be mostly due to Rodgers' brilliant play. The defending Super Bowl champion MVP has already thrown for 2,869 yards and 28 touchdowns in just nine games, becoming the first quarterback in NFL history to produce that combination of passing numbers in that short a span.

Rodgers, who has a passer rating of 130.7, has posted a rating of at least 100 in all nine games, tied with Peyton Manning (2004) for the longest such streak in a season.

Talk about being in a zone: Rodgers has a rating of 140 or better in his last three games, and can set the NFL record -- also held by Roger Staubach (1971) and Kurt Warner (1999) -- with a rating that high against the Buccaneers.

But Rodgers isn't thinking of any individual numbers.

"We're thinking about winning our division and getting a home playoff game and all of that will take care of itself," he said. "I just want to be efficient and consistent and get us in good situations. If we're doing that and I'm not turning the ball over, we're going to be in every game."

 

McKnight's struggles continue

Long after the Jets' 17-13 loss to the Broncos in Denver on Thursday night, Jets second-year running back/kick returner Joe McKnight sat in a daze at his locker, grass stains covering his uniform and eye black smudged all over both cheeks.

McKnight blamed himself for the loss, mostly because of his third-quarter fumble on a kickoff return. It was his second fumble in the last two games; his muffed punt led to a Patriots touchdown last Sunday night.

"I was just trying to make a play, trying to score a touchdown and get some points on the board, but you can't do it without the ball," McKnight said. "I muffed a punt last week and the fumble this week. It just can't happen like that. We had a chance to put that game away . Without the fumble, we could have won the game."

 

Feel-good story of the week

Fantastic news for Patriots rookie offensive lineman Marcus Cannon, who was added to the team's 53-man roster this week after battling through cancer that was diagnosed shortly before this year's NFL draft.

Cannon had chemotherapy in the offseason, and his cancer is in remission.

"I feel great," Cannon said. "It's awesome. I've just been waiting around, doing what I can to help the team."

The Patriots drafted Cannon, who played at Texas Christian, in the fifth round. He began the season on the team's non-football illness list.

"There's a lot of people that had their hand in getting him ready between the trainers and the doctors and really Marcus himself," said Nick Caserio, the Patriots' director of player personnel. "The most important thing was for him to get healthy, and we're at that point."

 

Red-hot Romo

If this is November, then Tony Romo must be playing well. The Cowboys' quarterback, coming off a nearly flawless performance last week against the Bills, is 17-2 in November, the best record of any quarterback in the Super Bowl era.

In November games, Romo has completed 67.4 percent of his passes for 5,192 yards, 46 touchdowns and only 12 interceptions for a 113.1 rating.

The Cowboys are counting on him to continue his winning ways when they visit the reeling Redskins, losers of five straight, in Washington. Romo has won four of his last five starts against the Redskins.

 

Quick hits

Chiefs quarterback Tyler Palko, 28, makes his first NFL start Monday night against the Patriots. He's filling in for the injured Matt Cassel. Palko has certainly paid his dues, having stints with the United Football League, the Canadian Football League and with the practice squads for the Steelers and Saints.

With 295 yards against the Chiefs, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady would set the NFL record for most passing yards through a team's first 10 games of a season. Brady has 3,032 yards and looks to pass Drew Brees, who has 3,326 yards through this year's first 10.

A Patriots win Monday night would break a tie between Bill Belichick and Bill Parcells for ninth place on the all-time coaching wins list. The Bills have 183 victories each, and former Rams, Bills and Seahawks coach Chuck Knox is eighth with 193. Don Shula holds the record with 347.

Bengals receiver A.J. Green, drafted fourth overall, leads all NFL rookies in catches (41), receiving yards (635) and touchdown catches (six). Four of Green's TDs have been for at least 35 yards.

 

NFL ON TV

Sunday

1 p.m., Bills at Dolphins, Ch. 2

Cowboys at Redskins, Ch. 5

4:15 p.m., Chargers at Bears, Ch. 2

8:20 p.m., Eagles at Giants, Ch. 4

Monday

8:30 p.m.,Chiefs at Patriots, ESPN

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