Patriots QB - Tom Brady or Matt Cassel?
Tom Brady has been one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL ever since he took over for Drew Bledsoe, just 8 years ago. Fans loved Bledsoe, but quickly took to the young Brady, and now a fairly similar situation has happened to Brady himself. After Brady incurred a season ending injury in the very first game of the year, Matt Cassel led the Patriots to an 11-5 season.
Had it not been for the surprisingly good Dolphins, who also went 11-5 and apparently had the record advantage over the Patriots, we might have seen Cassel and the Patriots make another run at the SuperBowl. However, that didn't happen, which can't be placed squarely on the shoulders of Cassel, who surprised everyone with his outstanding season, and the first that he had started since high school.
Matt Cassel threw for 3,693 yards this past season, as well as 21 touchdowns, 11 interceptions, and had a QB rating of 89.4, which was 10th in the NFL. Cassel's QB rating was also better than Brady's ratings in 2001, 2002, 2003, and 2006. However, in 2008 Brady threw for 4,806 yards, 50 touchdowns (NFL record), only 8 interceptions (NFL record, touchdown to interception ratio), had an outstanding QB rating of 117.2, and is fourth on the All Time QB Passer Rating list.
As the offseason rolls on, there is still one question on the minds of football fans around the world (mostly New England fans): Who will be the Patriots starting quarterback next season?
Tom Brady is the most likely choice, but there is only one problem with choosing Brady; he has yet to recover from his injury, and may even need another surgery in the future.
Matt Cassel is also a very good choice, but his contract is up, and with the season that he had this past year, he will undoubtedly need a raise.
It's definitely not a simple choice, choosing one over the other, but if the Patriots don't choose, they will be using up approximately 29 million in salary cap on the QB position alone. Having two great quarterbacks is definitely a big advantage, but using up such a big percentage of the salary cap is probably a huge concern.
Brady will be the guy if he is healthy, but as of right now, that doesn't look like it will be the case. That means Cassel will be the guy, if the Patriots want to extend his contract for at least one more year. Either that, or we may even see both quarterbacks starting at some point next year.
Brady has often been compared to Joe Montana, one of the greats for the SanFrancisco 49ers. Between Montana, and Steve young, the 49ers won 4 SuperBowls. Can the Patriots do the same with Brady, and Cassel? All Cassel will need to do is lead the Pats to the SuperBowl next season, if he starts...
The Future of Matt Cassel is in...
Which QB Stepped Up For Their Team Most This Season?
Brady vs. Cassel
Player CMP ATT YDS CMP% TD INT RAT
Cassel 2008 327 516 3693 63.4 21 11 89.4
Brady 2008 7 11 76 63.6 0 0 83.9
Brady 2007 398 578 4806 68.9 50 8 117.2
Brady 2006 319 516 3529 61.8 24 12 87.9
Brady 2005 334 530 4110 63.0 26 14 92.3
Brady 2004 288 474 3692 60.8 28 14 92.6
Brady 2003 317 527 3620 60.2 23 12 85.9
Brady 2002 373 601 3764 62.1 28 14 85.7
Brady 2001 264 413 2843 63.9 18 12 86.5