|FBG Mobile Home|
Week 1 vs. SD
Passing: 10 - 22, 68 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 2 / 4 / 0
Playing in a hard steady rain with a team featuring two solid running backs and a surging special teams unit, Matt Cassel was simply not asked to do much on Monday night. He was under a lot of pressure early on and didn't complete a pass until mid-way through the 2nd quarter. From that point on he had the look of a pedestrian game manager in Charlie Weiss's offense. He struggled on some of his passes and was not really helped out by his WR's throughout the game. His lone highlight of the evening came on a 2 yd TD pass where he executed a play action call to perfection. Time will tell if this is what the KC offense will be looking like all season or if this a one week rain soaked aberration.
Week 2 vs. CLE
Passing: 16 - 28, 176 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Rushing: 4 / 5 / 0
For the second straight week in a row the Kansas City Chiefs won a game despite not doing very much on offense. Matt Cassel was accurate and helped manage the game well but he could not do much more than get the team into field goal position. He was also intercepted twice in the game. It seems Cassel is not much more than a serviceable game managing type quarterback who lives and dies with his running game...
Thankfully for the Chiefs, the defense and special teams have been playing great, but they'll need much more from Cassel if they truly hope to win anything meaningful. Unless you're in a deep start-multiple-quarterbacks league then you could do much better than Cassel. Much, much better.
Week 3 vs. SF
Passing: 16 - 27, 250 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 2 / 7 / 0
Cassel had to deal with a fair bit of pressure early in the game, which really hampered his ability to develop any rhythm with his receivers. When he finally got time in the pocket to make his read, he then threw an interception on a pass intended for Dwayne Bowe. It was not a bad throw, but a bad decision as Bowe was well covered. As the game went on, Cassel did a much better job focusing downfield while avoiding the rush, and overall, reading the defense. The Chiefs offense gained momentum steadily, the big spark coming with Cassel's on-the-money, in stride, touchdown throw to Dexter McCluster. And a Wildcat Flea Flicker (with Cassel lined up wide) resulted in a dazzling score as he found a wide open Dwayne Bowe with a bomb in the end zone. Cassel's third passing score of the day was a great over the top throw to his rookie TE in the end zone. Cassel had a great game, not because he dominated, but he understood the strengths of his main weapons and used them well.
Week 5 vs. IND
Passing: 16 - 29, 156 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 1 / 1 / 0
Cassel didn't have a great game, but he didn't make any big mistakes, and he made enough good throws for his team to win. As usual, Cassel was at his best when his first read was open and he could deliver the ball on time with decisiveness. He rarely made anything happen when the play broke down, save for a terrific throw on the run to keep the Chiefs alive down ten late in the fourth quarter. His mobility to elude the rush also saved some big losses, but he was not decisive after he kept the play alive. Cassel cost the team a scoring opportunity when he threw to a well-covered receiver on a 4th down inside the ten in the first half, but his deep throw to Dwayne Bowe in the second half was perfect and should have given KC the lead and momentum, but Bowe dropped it (and the following target too). Cassel remains a barely rosterable fantasy QB, but his hold on the starting job seems secure for now.
Week 6 vs. HOU
Passing: 20 - 29, 201 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 1 / 8 / 0
Cassel had perhaps his best game as the Chiefs starting quarterback on Sunday against the Texans. He was cool and confident in leading the offense down the field, including starting the game 5/5 on the Chiefs first scoring drive. While his total yardage numbers are not all that impressive, Cassel's three touchdowns came on a variety of difficult throws. His best pass came on a catch-and-run touchdown to Dwayne Bowe where Cassel quickly read the blitz, found his "hot" read, and placed the ball in the perfect position for Bowe to catch it on the run. Cassel also completed over 65% of his passes and managed to lead the Chiefs to 22 first downs, including 13 through the air. His play action has also improved to the point that, in conjunction with the Chiefs running game, the Kansas City offense is creating more opportunities for downfield passing. The difficulties the team had in stretching the field in 2009 appear to be diminishing as a result of Cassel's ability to know when to unload the ball for a short gain and when to send it down field to one of his speedy receivers.
Week 7 vs. JAX
Passing: 13 - 18, 193 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Matt Cassel is starting to understand what is expected of him in the Chiefs offense. He is not required to go out and be a hero. He simply has to keep the offense on schedule. Cassel had several passes in this game that were ill-advised and by all right should have been intercepted. He threw into coverage once or twice, allowing Jaguars defenders the chance to make the play. Cassel had a nice touchdown pass to Bowe when he saw the safety in the Cover 2 zone was late getting over. He took advantage and Bowe scored. His second touchdown pass to Bowe was magnificent, but Bowe made a high pass from Cassel look good. Cassel hasn't passed the level of game manager yet for the Chiefs, but if they keep winning, then fans won't care.
Week 8 vs. BUF
Passing: 14 - 26, 152 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 2 / 13 / 0
Cassel's numbers were not great, but he wasn't asked to do much either. The gameplan for the Chiefs was simple: Run the ball. When Cassel did get a chance though, he played pretty well. In the first half, he also just missed throwing a deep touchdown to Bowe, as the ball was right in Bowe's arms and should have been a TD or a pass interference penalty, but it was a great throw. When two running backs combine for over 40 carries, it's going to be a quiet day from the passing game, but Cassel made it count, by converting on 3rd down and leading the team to two game-winning field goal drives, one which was missed by the kicker, and then the game-winning drive at the end of overtime. Cassel also had a nice throw on the goalline to a leaping Dwayne Bowe, as the two players continue to build their chemistry.
Week 9 vs. OAK
Passing: 20 - 35, 216 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 3 / 14 / 0
Another typical performance for Cassel, where he shows efficiency running the plays as designed, but little ability to create if he faces pressure or the play doesn't work the way it was drawn up. He did get in rhythm for a stretch in the first half, and Cassel also had a scramble for a TD called back by a penalty. Cassel followed that with a high-arcing fade to Verran Tucker for the Chiefs first TD of the day. He also zinged a TD in Dwayne Bowe downfield in the second half, but the red zone offense was hurt on other drives by Cassel throwing up too many lollipops, including one at the end of the first half that was intercepted. In general, Cassel is still lacking feel and accuracy on his deep ball and the Chiefs missed some opportunities because of that. If Cassel had been a little more accurate on a back shoulder throw to Dwayne Bowe that had worked earlier in the game, the Chiefs would have won. Cassel is good enough to keep the Chiefs in games, but not good enough to win them on his own, or help them pour it on and run away from anyone but the worst defenses in the league. He is a fantasy backup at best and the Chiefs run-heavy philosophy makes him a low-end backup at that.
Week 10 vs. DEN
Passing: 33 - 53, 469 yards, 4 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 2 / 3 / 0
Matt Cassel played a poor first half, but you wouldn't know it from looking at his stats and numbers. In the first quarter, he missed an easy throw over the middle to Charles and overthrew a wide open Chambers downfield. Cassel was forcing throws early in the game as Kansas City fell behind, and was holding onto the ball too long which resulted in numerous avoidable sacks. Often times, Cassel would get rattled in the pocket and his mechanics would become erratic leading to inaccurate and hurried throws.
Judging from his stats alone, you would think he played a terrific game. However, Kansas City was down 35-7 in the second quarter and Cassel was able to pile on a lot of garbage yards and touchdowns in the meanwhile. He threw well at times, but rarely looked outside of Charles or Bowe. Denver was playing very cautiously late in the game with zone, after Cassel was able to make them pay after blitzing him earlier. It's tough to take any real meaning in Cassel's game as the score was too lopsided so early in the game.
Week 11 vs. ARI
Passing: 15 - 24, 193 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Matt Cassel played with a lot of poise and confidence against the Cardinals. It is clear that he has worked hard in the past week to correct some of his errors. He has developed a special connection with Dwayne Bowe in the passing game. Cassel delivers an accurate ball when given time and stepped up in the pocket in this game when pressured. It was something of a vintage display at the quarterback position from a name you wouldn't normally associate with a statement like that.
Week 12 vs. SEA
Passing: 22 - 32, 233 yards, 4 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 5 / 28 / 0
Matt Cassel is looking more and more like the quarterback the Chiefs invested so much money in just a couple of years ago. He is developing a special relationship on the field with Dwayne Bowe and is aided by a very capable running game. Cassel showed good mobility in this game, evading pressure well and keeping his eyes down the field to make completions against the blitz. On one play, Cassel spun out of a sack, rolled left and fired a strike to Bowe down the sideline. Cassel had a very nice game in Seattle in a hostile environment.
Week 13 vs. DEN
Passing: 17 - 31, 196 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 2 / 5 / 0
Cassel struggled with his accuracy vs. the Broncos in arrowhead. It was cold and windy, and resulted in some balls falling before it reached their expected target from Cassel. For example, Cassel threw a pass to the wrong shoulder on Moeaki and later then tried to hit Bowe on the sideline. Both passes fell incomplete and were likely a direct result of the wind changing the direction of the ball. Cassel had low statistical numbers as he handed the ball off a lot to his very talented backfield, but was able to use play action well as a result. Cassel enjoyed great pass protection against a well off balanced defense, and his rushing attack was able to extend drives and pick up first downs. Cassel did a nice job of buying time outside of the pocket in the redzone for his TE Pope, allowing him to uncover for the easy score. Cassel made some really nice throws to Moeaki over the middle and has great trust in his rookie TE and in fellow rookie, WR Tucker. He did take some big sacks, including one on 4th and 2 that ruined a long drive. Cassel had pedestrian numbers as CB Bailey shutdown his biggest threat in Bowe and his rushing attack took over a lot of drives.
Week 15 vs. STL
Passing: 15 - 29, 184 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 6 / 17 / 0
Cassel showed no ill effects from his appendectomy less than two weeks ago, even though he was a game-time decision. Cassel ran and showed no fear of getting hit, hung tough in the pocket, and put all the touch and zip on his passes that he had been able to in the past. Cassel started slow and was picked off when he threw to a well-covered receiver in the first quarter, but he settled down and started spreading the ball around, getting Chris Chambers and Tony Moeaki involved, and finding Dwyane Bowe on a deep ball. Cassel threw a TD on a play-action fake throw to Leonard Pope at the goal line, but just as it has been in most Chiefs wins this year, Cassel's main role was handing off to his RBs to nurse the lead.
Week 16 vs. TEN
Passing: 24 - 34, 314 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 3 / 20 / 0
Cassel looked like a veteran in complete control of the offense as he shredded the Titans for 300 yards, the majority of which came in the first half. Cassel spread the ball around to his favorite WR, his rookie TE, his explosive halfback, and he even got Chambers and McCluster involved. His three TD passes were all completely different, and showcased the different part of his repertoire that he is showcasing. On the first TD, he threw a little screen pass to Charles, who got it in the endzone. Then on the next TD, he threw a beautiful touch pass over the defender, and right into Charles' hands for the RB's second TD reception of the day. His third TD was a bullet downfield, right into Dwayne Bowe's hands. Bowe ran a deep in-route, and Cassel threaded the needle between five Titan defenders in the area. Bowe than outran the defenders, going 75 yards. In between these TDs, Cassel did very little wrong. He did throw a couple errant passes, one that should have been intercepted by Cortland Finnegan and returned for a TD. But on this day, everything worked, and Cassel scorched the Titans.
Week 17 vs. OAK
Passing: 11 - 33, 115 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
Matt Cassel had possibly his worst game of the season against the Raiders mainly due to the constant pressure applied by the Oakland defensive front. Cassel was hurried all game long and threw several passes that ended up hitting the dirt. The pressure told late in the game as Cassel threw two picks on ill-advised passes, one that went for a touchdown. If the Chiefs play like this in the playoffs next week, they will be met with a quick exit. Cassel didn't play that poorly per se, but even when he had time he missed receivers and overall just looked a little sloppy.
Week 18 vs. BAL
Passing: 9 - 18, 70 yards, 0 TD, 3 INT
Rushing: 3 / 6 / 0
Cassel was, in a word, terrible. He never really came close to scoring for his team, and his longest completed pass downfield went for just eight yards (he had longer passes to Tony Moeaki and Jamaal Charles, but both of those featured a large gain after the catch). Cassel probably got owners negative scoring in most playoff fantasy scoring setups due to his three and very nearly four turnovers (he was bailed out of a fumble by the infamous "tuck rule" call...one of the only things that went right in the game for KC). His first interception came off a deflection, and the defender who made the interception actually turned it over immediately during the runback when he attempted a very ill-advised pitch to a teammate that was recovered by the Chiefs. But Cassel's other two turnovers were completely inexcusable passes that were thrown right over the middle of the field and never should have even been attempted. Cassel's strong statistical season somewhat hides the fact that he didn't play particularly well against some of the league's better defensive teams when he faced them. In this game in particular, he looked absolutely lost.