As of 6 days ago, Ben Roethlisberger (above) hadn’t lost an NFL game to anyone other than New England.

A pair of defeats to Indy and Cincinnati later, and the balance of power in the AFC North is, I dunno, shifting, morphing, etc. Perhaps I’d have a clearer explanation for it if I was wasn’t haunted by Big Ben’s Fathead commericals. When Carson Palmer didn’t take a snap his entire rookie season, there’s no way I saw him emerging into one of the league’s best QB’s. And likewise, prior to this year, I didn’t predict the regression of David Carr —- though it’s still tempting to wonder how he might thrive were he not sacked a dozen times a week. It could be interesting to see how Carr might perform in 2007 if Reggie Bush is in his backfield. (the former can leave Dom Capers tickets at will call).

Though it’s pretty hard to envision New England going deep in the playoffs, they’re clearly a different team with Corey Dillon available. That said, the Patriots probably could’ve beaten the Jets today with Matt Dillon at running back — and who amongst us, particularly those who paid to see “The Saint Of Fort Washington”, wouldn’t have liked to see that?

The Giants did a fine job manhandling Drew Bledsoe this afternoon, another shining example of why New York was oh so wise not to send Osi Umenyiora to San Diego in the Eli Manning draft day deal.