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— For the first 10 weeks of the season, Matt Cassel was a question mark. Now, after back-to-back 400-yard passing games for the Patriots, he’s a Certified Phenomenon.

You’ve likely heard that Cassel already has more 400-yard days than his illustrious predecessor, Tom Brady (one). But I’ll bet you haven’t heard this: In both games, the New England offense topped 500 yards - 513 in the loss to the Jets and 530 in Sunday’s win at Miami. Brady has guided the offense to only one 500-yard game in his seven-plus-year career.

Does this mean Cassel is running the show as well as Tom ever did? I’m not sure I’d go that far. But I wouldn’t be surprised if he was photographed soon in the company of a Victoria’s Secret model.

— And finally … a few odds and ends about running backs.

1. The Panthers’ DeAngelo Williams has quietly strung together four 100-yard rushing games in a row.

2. Michael Turner of the Falcons, the NFL’s No. 3 rusher with 1,088 yards, has more carries this season (251) than he did in his four previous years with the Chargers (228). Can he hold up for five more weeks - and perhaps longer?

3. Washington’s favorite multiple personality, Clinton Portis, has had at least one 20-yard gain in eight consecutive games. That might not be as scintillating as his five straight 120-yard rushing efforts, but it’s something no other back in the league has done this season.

Indeed, it probably hasn’t been done very often in any season - but again, I’m being held captive on a 737 with no Internet connection and can’t confirm my suspicions. Please send help.