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Thread: A Deeper Look Into Matt Cassel, and How He Compares w/ the League

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    Default A Deeper Look Into Matt Cassel, and How He Compares w/ the League


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    There has been a lot of debate regarding Matt Cassel recently. Last year, I was as big a supporter as anyone, defending him as often as possible. This year, I have changed my tone after watching him play. I have my reasons, but I am doing this study solely out of curiousity, and even I don't know the results as I write this post. I just have the data compiled into a spreadsheet (courtesy of ProFootballFocus.com).

    Three of the common arguments we hear are this:

    1.) Matt Cassel is not accurate enough.
    2.) Matt Cassel is cursed by dropped passes.
    3.) Matt Cassel is always under too much pressure to succeed.

    The data I have in front of me is simply 4 statistics for each team:

    1.) Drops
    2.) Pass Attempts (when a pass was actually thrown)
    2.) # of dropbacks where the quarterback saw pressure.
    3.) Total # of Dropbacks

    From these, it's easy to determine two percentages for every team:

    1.) The percentage of passes dropped (Drops/Attempts)
    2.) The percentage of times the quarterback faces pressure (Pressures/Dropbacks)

    Here's what I have found...

    The league average for percentage of passes dropped is 6.12%. The low is Buffalo (3.42%) and the high is St. Louis (9.04%). The Chiefs are in fact above average in drops at 7.61% (21 drops in 276 attempts). From a precentage standpoint, this is the 5th worst in the league. So we can without a doubt say, the Chiefs drop more passes than the rest of the league, on a per attempt basis.

    As far as pressures. The league average is that a quarterback will face pressure 32% of the time. The low is Tennessee (17.9%) and the high is Philadelphia (40.3%). The Chiefs are actually surprisingly below the league average (29.4%) and the 11th best in the league.

    So knowing this, what can I say about Matt Cassel? He has more passes dropped than the average QB, but also faces less pressure. How about his personal stats compared to other quarterbacks?

    CMP%: 59.5% (23rd)
    Yards/Attempt: 6.4 (26th)
    QB Rating: 76.6 (24th)

    You can look up other stats, but these are easy ones to relate on a per quarterback basis.

    My personal opinion of Matt Cassel is that he's serviceable, provided we have an awesome run game. I still think it is time for the Chiefs to spend a 1st round pick on a quarterback, and if anything, groom him to (hopefully) be our quarterback of the future. Matt Cassel, no matter the circumstances of dropped passes or protection, will most likely always be a below average NFL quarterback. Last year was impressive, but I can say without a doubt that it was against one of the easiest passing schedules, and our running game helped him out tremendously.

    I just hope this helps clear up confusion as to how many passes get dropped or how much pressure our quarterback is under.
    Diehard Fan Living in Packer Territory

    Co-Founder: 2 Mugs Fantasy Football -- a site about and football!

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    Nice read. Thanks.

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    Thanks for your good work on this, I too, beleive that Cassel is workable, but where we differ is that Cassel is never going to work as a chief QB unless we start over on oline and WR's. These guys have lost all confidence and it will be impossible for Cassel to earn it all back in the few years Cassel has left.I don't think Cassel is a bad QB, He just don't fit this team.

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    O-line...sure but WR's are you kidding?? Bowe is among some of the best in the league Breaston has come around playing well and Baldwin has played 3 games and at times has looked great...This is the last place work needs to be done and hopefully Moeaki comes back and then they are even better receiving.

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    Very interesting read, some things I expected and some I didn't. Thank you for doing all the statistical work!

    I'd have to say the thing that shocked me the most didn't even deal with Cassel it was Philly facing pressure 40% of the time. I know they've lost and all that but for buying the "dream team" so to speak it's pretty crazy to have the QB pressured more than anyone in the league.

    I am curious though, do you still have all the statistics readily available? I'd be curious to see the data for all the teams and QB's. Did you notice any patterns such as O-lines that weigh the most on average face the least pressure?

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    Nice post!

    I agree with you, I was as much of a Cassel supporter as you last year, and although I would have never considered myself a "Cassel Fan" I had always thought that he caught more grief than he deserved (like any QB in the NFL)

    I had always thought that he could be a decent QB in the right situation (IE: New England, when Brady went down) I never agreed with how Pioli went about acquiring him, and giving him the long term deal before seeing what he could do here (it seems like that is the trap/type of move that the average NFL franchise falls into, not the type of franchise that the Chiefs and Pioli are striving to become, like the steelers, packers, patriots, ravens, etc.)

    I also feel that this injury could be then beginning of the end of the Cassel, and possibly Haley era in KC. If Palko comes in and sparks some competitive play during this tough stretch, I think it cues us into drafting a QB high, and although maybe not starting him next year, but grooming him to succeed Cassel sooner rather than later. But if we do have a young QB come in next year, he will be coming into a good situation with his supporting cast. I think one main reason certain young QB's have a tough time transitioning to the NFL is due to the situations that are placed in, and are expected to to be the savior of a franchise. most don't have the offensive talent around them to succeed, but I think we will have that (Charles, Bowe, Breaston, Baldwin, Moeaki, McCluster, McClain, etc.) Not to mention, a defense that is, I think, 1 good player and an attitude change away from being a fairly decent D.

    Who knows? but I hope all works out, whichever way we decide to go.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OPLookn View Post
    Very interesting read, some things I expected and some I didn't. Thank you for doing all the statistical work!

    I'd have to say the thing that shocked me the most didn't even deal with Cassel it was Philly facing pressure 40% of the time. I know they've lost and all that but for buying the "dream team" so to speak it's pretty crazy to have the QB pressured more than anyone in the league.

    I am curious though, do you still have all the statistics readily available? I'd be curious to see the data for all the teams and QB's. Did you notice any patterns such as O-lines that weigh the most on average face the least pressure?
    I'm actually kind of mad because my wife shut down the computer before I saved the spreadsheet! I will recompile it though, it only took 30 minutes. If you PM me your e-mail I'll send it your way when I get it put back together.
    Diehard Fan Living in Packer Territory

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    Of course, going by this years stats, that makes sense. But in a team decimated by injury, we couldn't expect anymore than that. Matter of fact, as bad as this team has played, I would be shocked to see him doing any better. I want us to win, as I've said, and I want Palko or Stanzi to be good. However, when their numbers aren't even close to Cassel's I won't gloat. I will point out that the team needs improving around them. You simply cannot expect a QB to do well with this team and coaching around him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by azchiefsfan View Post
    Of course, going by this years stats, that makes sense. But in a team decimated by injury, we couldn't expect anymore than that. Matter of fact, as bad as this team has played, I would be shocked to see him doing any better. I want us to win, as I've said, and I want Palko or Stanzi to be good. However, when their numbers aren't even close to Cassel's I won't gloat. I will point out that the team needs improving around them. You simply cannot expect a QB to do well with this team and coaching around him.
    FYI, this team is still in the top 10 in total rushing, and the 5th worst in passing...Ahead of only the Vikings (Ponder/McNabb), Broncos (Tebow), 49ers (Smith), and Jaguars (Gabbert). 1,289 passing yards through 9 games is bad, no matter how you paint it.

    I know another team that lost their stud tight end and best running back, last year. The Green Bay Packers. Guess what they went on to do? The injury excuses can only go so far.
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    Quote Originally Posted by azchiefsfan View Post
    Of course, going by this years stats, that makes sense. But in a team decimated by injury, we couldn't expect anymore than that. Matter of fact, as bad as this team has played, I would be shocked to see him doing any better. I want us to win, as I've said, and I want Palko or Stanzi to be good. However, when their numbers aren't even close to Cassel's I won't gloat. I will point out that the team needs improving around them. You simply cannot expect a QB to do well with this team and coaching around him.
    Actually I'd be curious to see the kind of statistics that Ryfo presented for any year. I'm sure there are patterns and it'd be interesting to see if someone can point to a certain year and say that year team A got two new lineman that ended up starting or they lost two linemen that year and the backups sucked.

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