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Pats primed for second title

The running of Antowain Smith and defense of Rodney Harrison are among the reasons New England will beat Carolina.

Updated: January 31, 2004, 12:51 PM ET
By Len Pasquarelli | ESPN.com

HOUSTON -- Rarely has a Super Bowl coach overshadowed his team the way that New England's Bill Belichick has eclipsed the Patriots player profile this week. But even in a week when Belichick seemed to gain further stature, with some suggesting that a second Super Bowl triumph in three seasons could catapult him to another level, the Pats coach has been quick to remind everyone that players will determine the outcome on Sunday night.

"Once we kick it off," he said, "it's their game."

With ...

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