32-Year-Old Quarterback – Minnesota Vikings
2014 Fantasy Football Outlook
As far as failed starting quarterbacks go, Cassel might not be so bad. He threw more touchdowns (11) than interceptions (nine) in 2013 and managed to complete 60 percent of his passes. He'll be the fa...
Matt Cassel Contract Information:
Re-signed with the Vikings in March of 2014.
Cassel enters training camp as the leader in the quarterback competition, according to head coach Mike Zimmer. "In my mind I have Cassel as the No. 1 quarterback going into camp. I don't have a starter in mind yet," Zimmer told ESPN 1500 am Twin Cities. "[The players] are going to determine who the starter is on the practice field about how they go about their business, how they perform in the preseason games. I understand the quarterback's a big situation."
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|Passing||Pass Distance||Big Pass Games||Rushing||Fumbles|
|2014 Proj||32||MIN||Subscribe now to see our 2013 projections for Matt Cassel|
Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
|Fantasy Points Per Game||Passing Stats||Red Zone Passes||Red Zone Runs|
|2014 Proj||32||MIN||Subscribe now to see our 2014 projections for Matt Cassel|
Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
|Snap Count||Passing||Pass Distance||Rushing||Fumbles||Red Zone Passes||Red Zone Runs|
A blank stat line is used above whenever a player was not on the field for any plays in the game that week.
Matt Cassel: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)Just Thursday, coach Mike Zimmer said he was hopeful the team would bring Cassel back, and while Houston reportedly had eyes on the 31-year-old, Zimmer's got his wish. The quarterback position is still a glaring hole for Minnesota, and the club figures to upgrade on Day 1 of the draft, but Cassel at least provides them with a serviceable placeholder and/or a veteran backup option.
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)According to both sites, Cassel is a candidate to become a starter in Houston. Cassel began his career in the New England organization at a time when Houston head coach Bill O'Brien coached there.
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)That said, Zimmer expects Cassel to explore other opportunities, with Houston already having been mentioned speculatively as a possible destination for Cassel, who turns 32 in May.
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)If added by Houston, Cassel -- who spent his last two seasons, (2007-08) with the Patriots working with Texans coach Bill O'Brien -- could compete for the team's starting QB job, though at this stage there are still a couple of moving parts on that front, including the status of veteran Matt Schaub, as well as the distinct possibility the Texans will draft a quarterback with the No. 1 overall pick in May's NFL draft.
Exclusive Fantasy Analysis (FREE PREVIEW)The Vikings could still re-sign him when free agency begins on March 8, but it's not clear which direction the team will go at quarterback under new head coach Mike Zimmer. Cassel signed a two-year deal with a mutual option for the second year before last season.
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Cassel is expected to start the 2013 season as Ponder's backup.
With an average of just 6.4 yards per pass attempt in his three-year career with the Chiefs, Cassel has demonstrated that heís no more than a game manager in the best-case scenario. The Chiefs, however, have done a good job of providing him with that scenario. Even as he returns from a Week 2 ACL tear, Jamaal Charles pairs with Peyton Hillis to give Kansas City what might be the best running back duo in the league, and the team heads into 2012 with one of its most talented offensive lines, too. With relatively little pressure on him, Cassel could do a decent re-enactment of his 2010, a season in which he threw 27 touchdowns compared to seven interceptions (though just 3,116 yards).
Casselís 2009 season in Kansas City was ugly, but he made a huge improvement in 2010, raising his quarterback rating from 69.9 to 93.0 and throwing 27 touchdowns to seven interceptions in the process. Last year seems like the best-case scenario with Cassel, however. His offense ran the ball more than any team in the league last year, and itís concerning that he didnít complete 60 percent of his passes or average seven yards per pass attempt. It also doesnít help that he was a bit hit-or-miss last year Ė 17 of his touchdowns were thrown in just five games, and he failed to reach the 200-yard mark in nine games. The addition of first-round rookie Jonathan Baldwin should help as the team had very little wideout production beyond Dwayne Bowe last year.
This is a make-or-break year for Cassel. His skill talent in KC has taken a dramatic turn for the better relative to last summer. Dwayne Bowe had his moments with the new coach Todd Haley but has premium ability. Jamaal Charles is Chris Johnson Jr. at running back and especially catching passes out of the backfield. Chris Chambers doesnít seem like a good fit in a Charlie Weis system, but the Chiefs were convinced enough to give him $15 million over three years. Cassel is a strong value play this year in the late middle rounds. Given the coaching and system and the fact that the Chiefs are likely to remain bad and thus will throw often, Cassel should post a winning yardage number and at least moderate TDs. The worry is the Chiefs' porous offensive line.
Although he did much better than expected, Cassel wasn't even half the player Tom Brady was in same Patriots offense in 2007. Now he gets to play in what we expect will be a pass-oriented offense, as head coach Todd Haley was brought in after helming the Cardinals offense in 2008. Offensive coordinator Chan Gailey, who also was pass-happy last year near the end of Herm Edwards' Chiefs run, was retained in that role. But this will be Haley's offense. Cassel's big deficiency is the same one that plagues most inexperienced passers - downfield throwing. Our functional arm strength measures only throws 11-to-20 yards from the line of scrimmage. In 2008, Cassel had a 72 QB rating on these throws, completing less than 50 percent of his attempts (54-of-116). Clearly the Patriots believed in his ability to execute these throws, because they made up 22.5 percent of his attempts, about league average and a higher rate than Brady attempted in 2007. But Cassel, despite the appearances of a strong arm, simply did not execute. He looked much more at home when his tosses traveled within that five-to-10 yard area from scrimmage. The many easy attempts this distance elevated his overall completion rate to 63.4 percent and his YPA to 7.2, both of which are barely good enough for fantasy starter consideration. The loss of Tony Gonzalez is going to hurt the passing attack, but Dwayne Bowe is about as close as you're going to find to Haley's former WR (and sideline nemesis if you remember back to the playoffs), Anquan Boldin. But who plays opposite Bowe? Mark Bradley? He's never showed much consistency, and slot-man Bobby Engram is 36 years old and limited to the short passing game. And there's no one to threaten the seam-area of the field post-Gonzalez. This season shapes up as a long, transitional one for the Chiefs and especially for Cassel, who will miss the A-plus playing environment he had in New England.
As Tom Brady's backup, Cassel won't see any meaningful p[laying time, unless the unthinkable -- a Brady injury -- happens. With just 39 passing attempts over three seasons, the sample size with Cassel is small, but he has been in the Pat's system long enough that he at least should be comfortable enough with the team's offense, if pressed into duty.
Cassel, who has been working behind great QBs since his USC days, will continue to serve as the top backup to the Patriots' durable starting QB, Tom Brady. He has good size and arm strength, plus the smarts to run the New England offense. The only thing he lacks is experience, which is something the team hopes he'll get in the preseason, rather than as the result of the unthinkable; a Brady injury.
Though the Patriots could choose to bring in a veteran QB at some point, Cassel opened training camp as the top backup behind Tom Brady. Though he has limited game experience over the last few years, the team apparently believes that the USC product has the tools to be an effective NFL quarterback and his learning curve has even been compared to that of young Brady.
After backing up the 2004 Heisman Trophy winner Matt Leinart and former USC Heisman winner and current Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer, Cassel is somewhat of an unknown quantity since he has not seen much game action of late. Still, the Patriots hope that they have a diamond in the rough in Cassel, who could either push for the No. 3 QB job or land on the practice squad, where the team can develop him.