Matt Cassel reportedly signs with Minnesota Vikings
Matt Cassel did not linger as a free agent for very long. Just a few hours after the Kansas City Chiefs cut Cassel with two years and more than $16 million left on his deal, Cassel signed with the Minnesota Vikings, according to FOX Sports’ Jay Glazer.
Cassel posted a disappointing 19-28 record in four years as the Chiefs’ starting QB after coming over from New England. He missed seven games during the 2012 season.
His relocation to Minnesota at the very least provides more certain competition for Christian Ponder. While the Vikings may keep Ponder entrenched as the starter early on, following a 2012 playoff berth, Cassel may not be that far away from taking over the job.
Cassel does have two seasons of more than 3,000 yards passing — 2008, when he took over for an injured Tom Brady; and 2010, as he earned a Pro Bowl nod and helped the Chiefs to an AFC West crown.
Ponder currently has two seasons left on his rookie deal, at an average of about $1.5 million. In other words, it would not be a crushing blow to the Vikings’ books to either bench Ponder in favor of Cassel or, down the road, cut Ponder loose and turn the offense over to Cassel.
Of course, either of those scenarios involve Cassel recovering after a rapid demise in Kansas City. Within two seasons of that AFC West title, Cassel became the main scapegoat for Chiefs fans.
He’ll get renewed life — and possibly another chance at a starting gig — with the Vikings.
Grade: C-plus. The Vikings finally have a veteran to really push Ponder as the starter. But we’ll have to wait and see how much lasting damage Cassel’s Kansas City collapse did to his psyche.