Say what you want about Kansas City Chiefs QB Matt Cassel’s play on the field, but off the field, he is a class act.
Cassel has a tough job. He plays the most important position on his team in a town with some of the most passionate and vocal fans in the NFL. It seems every couple of weeks we see a player in another NFL town slip up with the media, saying something in the heat of the moment that draws even more heat and criticism into the locker room.
Heck, we saw Eric Winston do it just a couple of weeks ago.
But we never see it from Matt Cassel.
Cassel’s play in KC has been inconsistent at best, but despite often harsh criticism, he has always remained professional.
“Am I going to say that I’m happy about this situation? Absolutely not,” said Cassel yesterday via comments posted on KCChiefs.com. “I’m frustrated, but at the same time, I’m a team captain on this team. I care about this team, and again, as we move forward, I’m a big boy. I’m not going to hang my head. I’m going to do what I’ve always done and work hard, tremendously hard. I’ve said this from day one, we’ve got a great room. My role has changed at this point. I’ll support Brady Quinn and get him ready to play. That’s my role as a teammate and as a captain of this team.”
While Cassel said he didn’t see his benching coming, he understands why head coach Romeo Crennel made the move.
“I can’t tell you that I saw this coming, but at the same time, when you’re 1-5 and your team is struggling and the coach wants to find a way to spark the team, he felt like this was the best way to do it. He made that decision.”
“This is the situation. Right now I am the backup. That’s my role on this team. I’ll embrace that role, and I’ll work hard and if my opportunity comes up to play, I’ll be ready to go.”
Good for Matt Cassel. He’s a competitor and no competitor wants to fail, but it is a credit to his character that he is able to handle the situation with honesty and class.
Let’s not feel too bad for Cassel. He’s made a fortune as the starting QB of the Chiefs. He got the opportunity to lead the Chiefs to an AFC West championship and to play in a Pro Bowl. He is still young enough, talented enough and experienced enough that he will be able to continue playing in the NFL, likely in a backup role, for a few more years.
As for the Chiefs, they’re lucky to have a person like Cassel on their roster and in the community.