Matt Cassel Is Week 1's 7th Best QB

Some Kansas City Chiefs fans were once again calling for QB Matt Cassel’s head following three turnovers in a Week 1 loss to the Atlanta Falcons, but if the experts at ESPN are to be believed, Cassel was the week’s 7th best signal caller.

ESPN has released their weekly QB rankings and Matt Cassel came in 7th and he is with some elite company. The KC QB came in just behind his old pal Tom Brady, with a rating of 87.1. The QBs ranked ahead of Cassel were:

Matt Ryan, Mark Sanchez, Joe Flacco, Peyton Manning, RG3 and Brady.

My guess is that ESPN realizes what I’ve been saying since the game ended: the loss wasn’t Cassel’s fault. In fact, while he is charged with three turnovers, really only one of them was on him. The fumble was Branden Albert’s fault, Cassel never had a chance. The tipped pass that got intercepted was on Tony Moeaki’s guy: on the play, the Atlanta LB was clearly early. Cassel’s throw was on target but Moeaki couldn’t bring it in.

Caseel had a great game for the Chiefs. He accounted for three of the team’s four TDs, throwing two and running in one himself. Failures on special teams and defense eventually doomed the Chiefs.

It is just one game, but it appears Cassel is primed to flourish in Brian Daboll’s offense.

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  • Justin

    well, there are 16 winning QB’s and he didn’t win so the stat is irrelevant! He better get stuff done in Buffalo on Sunday or ima be one mad fan!

    • Tarkus

      It’s not irrelevant when judging how he performed as an individual.

    • Patrick Allen

      Unfortunately, as with all things in life, context is relevant.

      • KCMikeG

        Can’t do it by himself – 4 drops Bowe, Moeaki, Dexter & Breaston. Don’t like Daboll’s predictable running on 1st down every time until 3rd quarter and only 3 times total which killed run game. Hali is back, DJ will be 100%, hopefully Flowers will be back and we play a terrible Bills defense. Time to get some revenge and respect this week.

    • Brian Martasin

      So throwing for 2 TDs and running for another isn’t “getting stuff done”?

      • Jim Harper

        ran for 1 and threw for 1 not 2.

    • Jim Harper


  • stephen

    the defense better show up and special teams too, cassel isnt the guy to bring this team back from a 2 score deficit

    • KCMikeG

      He did bring us back to tie three times and drove us down to do it a 4th time in the 3rd quarter but Succulot missed the FG to make it 20-20.

  • Sportsfan101

    I give up…. Not sure how many times that I have to say that Cassel isn’t the QB that we need and even after 4 years of seeing this horrible QB play people will still make excuses for him.. I’m not bashing him I’m just saying that we nd someone better at the QB position. He’s not getting it done and he’s had time…

    • Patrick Allen

      What are you giving up? Nowhere in the article is anyone saying that Cassel is the answer. It says he had a good game. The fact is, not every game Cassel has played for the Chiefs has been crap.

      Trust me, when he has a bad game, we’ll write about it. But what purpose does it serve popping in with negativity every time someone mentions Cassel did well?

      He is the QB we’ve got. He’s the best QB we’ve got. He may not be good enough to win the Chiefs a Super Bowl but we are allowed to use our eyes to tell us when he plays well, when he plays poorly and when he is the victim of circumstances.

      • Sportsfan101

        Ok I’ll bite… I didn’t give up on the chief’s but I did give up on Cassel a long time ago and it gets me that people would rather make excuses for him and keep there fingers crossed and hope that he comes out the next time and do better and he if he does, then it’s it may only be for a quarter for a half we were lucky but overall he’s not a good QB but he’s a good backup if needed.. Everything is almost in place except that more important part and that is QB position and it baffles me that we could do better with a better QB wouldn’t you like report on the positives after ever game instead of the negative or the victim of a circumstance? I feel like 4 years is enough of defending Cassel or calling him a victim of circumstance I like to get a QB where we don’t have to report stories like that wouldn’t you? We can do better than Cassel my friend…

        • Calchiefsfan

          Nobody is trying to make excuses and most of us keep our fingers crossed every week with Cassel. After 2010 I was hoping that he would continue to improve into 2011 and it never happened, he regressed.
          I would love a true franchise QB, which Cassel isn’t. Though I don’t think he is as bad as a lot of people try to make him out to be. I just haven’t seen any opportunity for the Chiefs to get someone better. Kyle Orton with all his issues would have been a lateral move. Unless you’re picking one of the top 2 QBs in any draft your odds aren’t very good that you’ll get a franchise QB. This last draft is a good example.
          The thing is, he is what he is, an average to slightly above average QB. It’s the best we’ve got. Until we get someone better, (soon I hope), I’m going to be pulling for him to succeed.

          • Sportsfan101

            I was hoping the same in 2011 but again it never developed and to be perfectly honest with you I would’ve preferred Orton over Cassel anytime but you play with the hand that you’re dealt and hopefully the GM will wake up and realize that we need and QB and get one in next years draft and if they keep playing Cassel we might get a good pick next year.. If everyone knows that Cassel isn’t SB QB and just a get by QB then why keep him? Anyway life moves on and all I can do is watch right? Go Chiefs!!!!

          • Calchiefsfan

            Well I think we keep him until someone better comes along. I’m not one who would give away the farm on a possible “sure thing” like RG3. Though I might be wrong on that. It seems like we just about have all the other pieces in place.
            We had no chance getting Manning because of his close friendship with Elway but it sure would have been nice. Maybe Pioli will pull something out of his hat this next draft.

          • Sportsfan101

            God man I hope so.. And I hope he pulls a rabbit out of the hat this season while it’s still early but if not that’s fine I’ll just watch it play out. You should’ve seen me during last year draft I was so upset that we didn’t go after one of the top 5 QB’s and I didn’t understand why? And finding out that they’ve already cut a few of the draft picks from last year and this year didn’t help the matter especially when the idea of drafting a good QB was overlooked for some reason.. I know we got Stanzi but I don’t he’s it man..

          • Jim Harper

            I am with you man. I am tired of picking up Cassel. All the other issues have an effect on the wins, but good QB’s find a way, but Cassel can be having a great game and then blow up for no reason. Anyone remember the game in 2010 against the Texans? Sadly I just do not understand why with the money available that this has not been corrected. Everybody thought the Redskins were crazy to give up so much for RG3, but Shannahan knew what he had to have and got it. You only had to watch him play Sunday to know that Shanahan got it right.

          • micah stephenson

            the reds wur n a better position to move up and still paid alot. It wud hav cost us 5 or 6 1st rd picks 1 of which cud b used on a QB soon.

          • KCMikeG

            Yes – Weeden sucked, Arizona QB’s sucked, Locker, Wilson, Tannehill, Dalton, Ponder, Freeman, Newton, Big Ben, Rivers, Palmer all had average to bad days. Luck had 3 picks and a fumble. Stafford had 3 picks to 1 TD. Vick had 4 int’s and 2 fumbles.

        • KCMikeG

          He didn’t need any defending in 2010 with 27 TD’s and only 7 nit’s. He shouldn’t need any this year either if it wasn’t for fans ignoring the reality of our teams performance. He will have his best year yet.

      • Calchiefsfan

        Paddy I think we need to give up, lol. Every time one of us says anything positive about Cassel it is immediately interpreted that we think he is the best QB in the NFL and Pioli should pay him more money.

        • KCMikeG

          What??? Cassel is an Elite top 5 QB? Says who? Freaking crazy the desire to completely ignore the positives to pile on the actual and imagined negatives. I just don’t get it. Where are the haters bitching on the ST failure giving them the ball at our 25? On Albert for getting smoked allowing Cassel to be blindsided, for Daboll running on ALL but 3 first downs, on Succop’s missed FG that would have tied the game at 20-20 in the 3rd, in RAC’s inability to adjust the D – Houston in coverage when he is our best hope for a pass rush?? Very little blitzing DB’s to play a zone that wasn’t working? Plenty of concerns and Cassel is NOT one of them! Reality check haters!

  • chiefinatlanta

    Albert gave up protection on Cassel’s blind side, which resulted in the fumble. His first INT was a tipped ball, and the second came off a naked bootleg, on 3&1. And while he shouldn’t have thrown that pass, a different play probably should have been called. Take away two of those turnovers, and the depleted defense would have had a better second half. Chiefs fans need to relax: Cassel looked really good. Perhaps it’s time to admit that we just got beat by a better team.

    • big chief

      These pop ups making my screen jump around have become intolerable. Since I’ve mentioned it a dozen times with no response I guess it’s time to find another Chiefs site.

  • Ryan A James

    First half Cassel is who I want to believe in! I wish Cassel would of shown a little more poise in second half when things started going downhill…the play that sticks out to me is the busted screen when he gave up and threw it at the defenders feet. There are still check down’s in a screen…you can’t just give up like that…the other two plays is the pick he threw across his body across fields after rolling out…only works in old Madden games…also he all but gave the ball to Asante Samuel but Samuel said no thanks…as a QB in the NFL, you can not break down mentally and that is exactly what he did…also if you re watch the game the biggest difference in Cassel first half to second half is he quit reading and dissecting the defense…first half he made lots of reads and audibles and had success…second half he stopped..he needs to call blitzes and make line calls

    • ArrowFan

      The one to Samuel was a miss communication between Matt and the WR. Who’s fault? But the WR didn’t break his route off and head for the sideline instead he kept running down field.

      • KCMikeG

        I was there and Cassel had NOWHERE to go with the pass EVERYONE was on the screen side of the field and while throwing it at the feet of the defender sucks and looks bad it showed me his maturity from last year’s bad decision on the screen in SD that killed our comeback drive.

  • Matt Dickson

    Good story. I agree with this. Our offense is deep and Cassel is throwing the ball better than he has at anytime in his career.

    It looks like he has more velocity and better accuracy. Before the wheels came off the bus, Cassel had a stellar first half. He was making good decisions and delivered some outstanding passes.

    What we should be concerned with is our defense. Our secondary is depleted and as a total unit, the defense has looked just plain bad. If we don’t get Kendrick Lewis and Brandon Flowers back soon, we’re bound to see a lot more pass happy teams rip us apart in the coming weeks.

    Pioli needs to also comb the waiver wire for depth at FS and CB, too. Reeves and Elam have no business on the field.

  • ArrowFan

    Someone needs to contact ESPN and let them know that they should not be making excuses for Matt Cassel! I think some are missing the point. He was ranked 7th and we lost! The only other QB currently playing in the league that could have won that game was Matt frickin Ryan. That should help some of you to better place your anger and blame. It was our Defense (and Special Teams) that lost that game no more questions.

    • Arrowhead Adventurer

      good points arrow. Matt turned or team around from the horrible herm edwards years. I am not his biggest fan, but we went from the worst to at least mediocre. thats going in the right direction

  • tm1946

    giggle, giggle I can always tell my granddaughter the game we watched together and I may have said a few improper word was actually our QB being the 7th best in the league. Wonder if I caught her a possum for Christmas, if she would think it was a dog?

    • Jim Harper

      Now that is the best one you have ever come up with.

  • BigGil

    Cassel (and just our offense in general) is looking a heck of a lot better than I anticipated months ago. Our defense needs to overcome their pass defense issues. Only way I see Pioli going QB in next year’s draft is if the defense doesn’t shape up and Cassel can’t keep up with opponents who are scoring in some capacity at the end of every drive, thus causing us to lose many games and get a Top 10 draft pick. But I think with less pressure to go blow for blow (read: our defense actually being able to cause some punts earlier in games) that Cassel will be more than a serviceable QB going forward, and would rather Pioli draft a CB early in next year’s draft. And for the out-and-out Cassel haters, everyone I know from the outside looking in (read: fans of other teams) are thoroughly convinced that Cassel is significantly better than most of us Chiefs fans give him credit for. Detaching myself emotionally from the situation, I’m starting to see their point. On a sidenote: Chargers and Raiders both did not impress me at all last night. That made me happy.

  • Chiefologist

    Cassel only threw for one td and ran for one. Draughn had the other td.

  • big chief

    These damn pop ups on here make my screen jump around and I can’t even read anything. I guess since I’ve mentioned it repeatedly with no response good bad or indifferent I’ll have to find another Chiefs news site. Disappointing, I like this one.

  • jon

    He still played his worst football when we needed him most. Not buying it.

  • Cy

    Cassel is the perfect example of how the quarterback, not any other position, gets pinned with a win-loss record and made a scapegoat. Objectively speaking, he played well, you can’t call for his head after one game. His play actually got me excited for the rest of the season, maybe with the defense back (Hali, Flowers, Toribio, Lewis) we can actually be competitive

    • tm1946

      Is that why we are Chiefs fans, to be competitive? If so, we certainly can live with a QB, 7th best QB last week, QB rating of 74. Sorry I thought we were supposed to become a dominate power in the entire NFL. Guess I missed something.

  • Bud

    i cannot agree with this logic .. as much as i really want to… to me he looked unsure at almost all times.. blindside sacks dont happen as often to QB’s with good pocket presence, which Cassel lacks. even on many completions he was ducking his head. how can you claim to see the field if that is the case.

    not to mention he telegraphs his throws which causes the skill guys to have to work that much harder to gain yards, or worse tipped balls…

  • BigGil

    Well that brought the Cassel haters out of the woodwork. He’s improved his passing and decision making since years of yore. He’s putting quite a bit more zip behind the ball, which helps get it into tighter spaces and travel a little farther. Downside is the added zip causes a sting the WRs aren’t used to yet… hence the drops. Cassel did well this game whether people care to admit it or not.