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Patriots franchise Cassel

Posted by Chad Finn, Globe Staff February 5, 2009 05:02 PM

The New England Patriots announced today that they have utilized their 2009 franchise designation on quarterback Matt Cassel.

The decision to do so is hardly unexpected and gives the club two main options: They can trade the 26-year-old quarterback if all continues to go well with Tom Brady's rehabilitation from a knee injury, or they can keep him.

The cost of the franchise tag (the average of the top five highest-paid players at a given position) on Cassel is a one-year tender for $14.65 million, according to the transition and franchise tag numbers released Jan. 30 by the NFL Players Association.

Since the franchise tenders are guaranteed, Cassel would count more against the cap than Brady, who is scheduled to carry a cap charge of $14.62 million for 2009. Brady is slated to have a $5 million base salary in 2009 and is due a $3 million roster bonus, so Cassel's take-home pay for '09 would also be more than Brady's.

There is a strong possibility the Patriots will trade Cassel, though Patriots coach Bill Belichick did not indicate that as an option in his comment in today's press release.

"Matt has been a pleasure to coach his entire career and last season in particular, when his years of hard work and commitment resulted in a most impressive performance," said Belichick. "We look forward to working with Matt again in 2009."

Today was the first day teams can designate franchise and transition players.

The 26-year-old Cassel, who made 15 starts after Brady's injury, completed 63.4 percent of his passes and threw for 3,693 yards and 21 touchdowns with 11 interceptions.

He becomes the first offensive player and just the fourth Patriot to be franchised by the team, joining Adam Vinatieri (2002 and 2005), Tebucky Jones (2003) and Asante Samuel (2007).

Christopher L. Gasper of the Globe staff contributed to this report.

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92 comments so far...
  1. Called it!

    Posted by Jabez February 5, 09 05:10 PM
  1. Cha ching! The Pats are going to get a minimum of 1 first round draft pick for him. Supply and demand at it's finest. So many teams are needing a qb and the class coming out in the draft is weak. Let the bidding war begin.

    Posted by MHaze February 5, 09 05:20 PM
  1. wow,what a surprise,who knew?now they need to get to work and rebuild that D.

    Posted by ROGER February 5, 09 05:21 PM
  1. That didn't take long. I bet that means a trade is in the works. Also congrats to Matt. At the beginning of the season, I didn't think someone who didn't start in college could play in the NFL. He proved me wrong. And, I know this may sound sacrilegious, I think his short throws are more accurate than Brady's and he hits receivers in stride allowing them to make more yards. So let's start the trade talk.

    Posted by george pat February 5, 09 05:32 PM
  1. I am glad they franchised Cassel. If Tom Brady does not fully recover from that very serious knee injury, Cassel again becomes a very important player for the Patriots. Nobody knows for sure as of right now how effective Tom Brady is going to be. I am sure he will be hampered by the injury and is only one hit away from going on the disabled list once again. I would like to see the Pats keep Cassel until such a time as Brady has proven that he has no ill effects from the knee injury.

    Posted by Birddog623 February 5, 09 05:36 PM
  1. nothing new, just make things official.

    Belichick saying "we look forward to working with Matt again in 2009" is just a smoke screen. Would he really go out and say, "ok guys, give us your best offers since Tom will be ready?"

    Posted by andyp February 5, 09 05:38 PM
  1. Way to go Matt! Enjoy Detroit next season!

    Posted by john February 5, 09 05:42 PM
  1. Good! This is the first step to moving on from Brady and finally going back to winning Superbowls (like we would have this year if the NFL didn't reward lesser teams over us)! We now have the best QB in the league tied up and we're going to get some huge cap relief once they cut Brady. The extra cap space will allow us to sign some good veterans to help out at WR and we can also use it on our o-line to protect Cassel.

    Posted by Jackie Ryan February 5, 09 05:42 PM
  1. Trade them both and use the kid, O'Connell. Imagine the defense the pats would have with all that freed up cap space. Almost $29000000.

    Posted by jacko48 February 5, 09 05:43 PM
  1. A very good move and Matt sure can't be upset.

    Posted by Big Jim February 5, 09 05:43 PM
  1. Minimum of a first round draft pick?

    I say they may be able to get an (unprecedented) two first round picks. One this year, one next. Or, a first round pick and an impact DB or LB. This kid is worth A LOT right now. Half the teams in the NFL need a QB upgrade to be competitive.

    Posted by Ldog February 5, 09 05:43 PM
  1. Trade them both and use the kid, O'Connell. Imagine the defense the pats would have with all that freed up cap space. Almost $29000000.

    Posted by jacko48 February 5, 09 05:43 PM
  1. I agree with Jackie, The Pats are now the real deal with Cassel starting! They should trade Brady to Detroit for a 6th round draft pick. However if the Lions were smart they would only offer a 7th round pick.

    Posted by Michael February 5, 09 05:49 PM
  1. The only problem, Jackie, is that the Patriots would take a 9.6

    million dollar salary cap hit if they cut Brady.

    Posted by Jamrs Keddy February 5, 09 05:49 PM
  1. Look for Matt in Jet Green for 2009!

    Posted by porknbeanz55 February 5, 09 05:51 PM
  1. Hoefully this will make up for the 1st round pick the "stole" from us last year...

    Posted by Warner didn't fumble February 5, 09 05:52 PM
  1. Possibly keep him and trade Brady? Im sure Brady is worth more and Cassel has already proven he can play. I love Brady, but another injury is just around the corner - count on it. Bad ankle to start the season and now bad knee?

    Posted by Sox fan February 5, 09 05:53 PM
  1. I am surprised they didn't wait a bit longer. Not sure when his tender offer arrives, but if he signs it, I thought that is it. Then, trading him would be very unlikely as he would have a one year contract which can't be reworked for a while. So, since this is the case, I would expect there must be some sort of a side agreement in place where he won't sign it, or they have a trade already worked out somewhere. Otherwise, they expect to keep him for the year.

    I tend to think it will be a conditional first rounder and a third round pick or a first round pick and a semi-impact player. We shall see. In Bill & Co. we trust....either way, congrats Matt...and thanks.

    Posted by ELCID February 5, 09 05:53 PM
  1. IF they trade Matt, he'll get a conditional 2nd pick and maybe a 2010 pick, or maybe a 09 conditional 2nd and a player. and that's all based on IF he signs it, and a lot of other factors... Go Matt - enjoy the cash!

    Posted by Jim February 5, 09 05:56 PM
  1. Pefect move, I guess the Pats can operate with all the "exits"! Also, any of you that keep suggesting that you should trade Brady aren't fans, period, your wanna-be GM's with too much time on your hands and no respect to the team's history. I hope you have the guts to post on here after Brady leads them to another great season!

    Posted by DMONMCD February 5, 09 05:56 PM
  1. No way they get a first round pick. This is not a straight-forward trade. Any team investing picks will want a multi-year deal. Cassel can block the multi-year deal if he does not like the team or the $. The new team will have to over-pay a bit for his service and will not want to pay with multi- hgh draft picks.
    If team "A" offers the Pats 2 first round picks but only offers Cassel 6 million a year (for 4 years)he will reject the deal. If team "B" offers Cassel 10 million a year but only offers the Pats a 2nd round pick then Cassel pushes the Pats to that deal. The kid has some leverage here, he can kill a deal anywhere by refusing an extension. Pats can not afford to keep him.
    Cassell traded for a 2nd round pick.

    Posted by tjl February 5, 09 05:56 PM
  1. the pats suck and they cheat last year they wished they could be like the dolphins in 1972 but they cant . nope wwe are the only ones who can get a perfect season an we dont need no mat cassel

    Posted by cory deGiovanni February 5, 09 05:59 PM
  1. Matt to Detroit for Leigh Bodden CB-Detroit and picks........congrats on your pay day Matt and thanks!

    Posted by David jf February 5, 09 06:00 PM
  1. More accurate than Brady? I can't even count how many times he threw behind Welker and Faulk. Cassel is among the worst I've seen in the NFL at throwing to a receiver running laterally. Of all his qualities, accuracy isn't one I'd choose. He has a strong arm, is great running the ball, and has shown that he can take coaching. Those are some good qualities, but teams should rightfully be concerned with his accuracy and what he does when the pocket breaks down. If he goes to a team with a questionable offensive line and mediocre receivers, it'll be a disaster.

    Posted by MarkZ February 5, 09 06:00 PM
  1. Trade them both and use the kid, O'Connell. Imagine the defense the pats would have with all that freed up cap space. Almost $29000000.

    Posted by cory DeGiovanni February 5, 09 06:03 PM
  1. Jackie-O you gotta be kidding me! Release Brady stop sniffing your sister's cooch ya moron! Brady's still the best out there. Look at the QB play this year. The only QB to really impress this season was Drew Brees...

    Posted by patsFAN401 February 5, 09 06:04 PM
  1. def trade cassell. i could see him on the tennessee titans. we would get chris johnson or trade cassell and maroney for johnson. that could work.

    Posted by Dmob February 5, 09 06:05 PM
  1. The Jets would be crazy not to at least make an attempt. Favre is done, they have on one else. Matt will be great in a couple of more years. He could grow and be a superstar with The Jets. A very good chance he'll always be #2 with the Pats...at least for another year.

    Posted by porknbeanz55 February 5, 09 06:06 PM
  1. Trade Cassell AND Brady and lower the ticket prices and offer free parking.

    Posted by C. Ray February 5, 09 06:11 PM
  1. Jackie Ryan, no one will cut brady that is just stupid.
    Also Cassel is not the best QB in the league; what are you nuts? We also donnot need vetran WR we have welker, moss, and Gafney name a better combination now in the league. In '07 welker was one of the best short hand catcher with 112 and 111 this year, Moss set records in '07 who else do we need and Gaffney had put up great stats a 3rd reciever. We do need help on the o-line, and the deffensive game.

    Posted by Tom Noonan February 5, 09 06:12 PM
  1. Well, under that scenario, it seems that Team would realize they'd have to increase their offer from $6 million a year.

    Posted by Jason Harris February 5, 09 06:14 PM
  1. MarkZ you seem like a smart guy I agree. Alsi Patsfan you know what you're talking about who ever wrote cutting brady is crazy!

    Posted by Frank the Tank February 5, 09 06:18 PM
  1. The Pats will be looking for a package similar to a team trading into the first round to get a project QB. A 1 and a 2. I still think Detroit or Minnesota are the likely destinations for him because neither of those teams want to look foolish for letting their division rival pay "only" a first round pick. Detroit certainly has more assets available for trade. The 20 and 33 would get it done without question. Minnesota is a Matt Cassel away from elite status while no one else can do that so immediately. Have I mentioned Carolina or San Francisco? The market is going to be strong for a proven winner at 26 years old.

    Posted by DTM33BB February 5, 09 06:27 PM
  1. I think this means one of two things:
    1) The Pats have absolute faith in Kevin O'Connell's ability to step in and lead the team, and as a result, by franchising him and indicating no desire to trade him, Belichick is just increasing Cassel's worth. If one of the greatest coaches of all time says that he's good enough for the NFL, there's going to be someone prepared to agree with him.
    2) This is from way out of left-field, but there's a scenario where we keep both, suck up the cap problems for a year, with a view to trading one or other of them depending on how successful Brady's recovery is. Think long term. Brady's not going to play foreever. As he loses a step of pace, he's going to get hit more, and pick up more injuries along the way. Cassel has essentially just finished a rookie season, so although he's in his mid-20s, he's not got the normal starting QB wear-and-tear.

    The problem is one of timing. How late can you realistically leave it before deciding to trade Cassel? Wait till the pre-season games? Wait till the opening Sunday of the season?!! Anyone who would want Cassel as their starter will want him in the system as soon as possible, so he has time to learn it. And do we yet know whether Brady will be fit enough? Probably not.

    Posted by Ben February 5, 09 06:31 PM
  1. Congrats to Matt! A class act.

    Posted by GG February 5, 09 06:31 PM
  1. You guys who are talking about cutting Brady are absolute nuts. Cassell's value is high, but did you not notice his innaccuracy throwing the deep ball? Ask Moss who he wants throwing the ball...I'm sure he's not calling for Brady (a cinch HOF'er btw) to be released. Prediction: Pats trade Cassell to KC for #1 pick and TE Tony Gonzalez.

    Posted by Mark February 5, 09 06:38 PM
  1. Everyone who suggested the Pats trade Brady seems to have forgotten that he helped them win three superbowl titles Hes the greatest QB out there. When Cassel first started it was a joke watching him try to complete a pass. Yes he has improved but hes a far cry from Brady. Anyone suggesting otherwise is just CRAZY!!!!

    Posted by Bradyfan February 5, 09 06:41 PM
  1. Well another day another dollar hopefully he will get traded to some team that has a good offensive line, so he can stay in the pocket longer. Its there that he thrives

    Posted by phil February 5, 09 06:43 PM
  1. Maybe the Detroit Lions could pick up Tom Brady now, "He would be playing back in Michigan" They could use their two (2) first round draft picks and the number 1 second round pick on linemen to protect him!

    Posted by david February 5, 09 06:50 PM
  1. Trade Brady? Only an idiot would suggest that. He threw for 50 TD's last season and when it's all said and done he will need the fingers on his second hand to hold all of his Superbowl rings. Cassel is indeed better than half of the starting quartbacks in the NFL but he is more likely a product of the system than a Hall of Famer. The Patriots will receive ATLEAST first and second round picks WHEN they trade Cassel. In BIll I believe!!!!!

    Posted by jofos February 5, 09 06:54 PM
  1. Brady will give it one more year hoping for a 4th ring and then hang it up. He has said in the past he has other things in life to accomplish. Cassell will take over either if Brady can't make it through next year or the following year.

    Posted by DevilDuck February 5, 09 06:55 PM
  1. i thought the media did a lousy job evaluating his value to teams that are in need of a qb. lets see if they have any clue as to what is going on in the nfl in regards to qb value in conjunction to the 2009 draft.

    Posted by joe scamman February 5, 09 06:57 PM
  1. cassel will go to kc for the number 3 pick and one of their disgruntled superstars who will then become a team player for the patriots like dillion and moss did.

    Posted by pat patriot February 5, 09 06:59 PM
  1. Hey Pats,
    Nice job making the playoffs with Cassel! Maybe the next franchise tag should be used on a hot pile of shit, oh wait you just did that - ha

    GO Steelers!

    Posted by Dave February 5, 09 07:04 PM
  1. Congratulations Matt from a slew of distant relatives who have watched you show the world that you are a NFL Quarterback. Good luck where ever you land.

    Posted by Virgil C. Cassel February 5, 09 07:08 PM
  1. Is this good or bad news for Brady??? Would you be surprised if we keep Matt and trade Tom? I hope not but I never thought that Drew Bledsoe would be gone either!

    Posted by eric February 5, 09 07:24 PM
  1. anyone who thinks that matt cassel will end up in the afc east doesnt understand anything, especially coach bill. Any of the teams in the afc east could offer their ENTIRE roster to the patriots for Cassel, and big bill would turn it down. he hates the rest of the afc east, just like any self-respecting new englander.

    word of the day:
    chowderhead: noun- an unintelligent person

    Posted by matt b February 5, 09 07:26 PM
  1. wow what a lot of money for a one year wonder. he beat kc oakland st louis
    seattle, san francisco , denver, buffalo, wow . lost to san diego , indy, pittsburgh
    jets and miami. pats are gonna be stuck with him and his salary.

    Posted by ed w February 5, 09 07:27 PM
  1. Hey Dave from Pittsburgh, Enjoy it now because it's not lasting much longer. The Patriots will be back and in Miami next year to win the Superbowl, PUT YOUR MONEY ON IT! By the way, Santonio Holmes didn't have both feet in bounds!

    Posted by jofos February 5, 09 07:34 PM
  1. Matt's autographed rookie football card just went through the roof on eBay.

    Posted by batman77 February 5, 09 07:34 PM
    IN 2009.
    FIGHT ON!!!!!!!!

    Posted by LEE COHEN February 5, 09 07:35 PM
  1. It is hard to be upset with that as a payday. I however suspect he wants to start and be a NFL QB. Professional athletes want to play and the money quickly becomes secondary when they are sitting on the bench.

    Posted by geek February 5, 09 07:36 PM
  1. Brady isn't getting any younger... with a couple of serious injuries to boot. I hope Parcell gets this one right. Best of Luck to the the Pats in 09!

    PS: Hey Dave - you are a pile of hot shit! Steelers got luck -- they only had to play AZ... count your blessings biatch.

    Posted by Bryan February 5, 09 07:38 PM
  1. Don't worry Eddie W. The Cassel Franchise designation will not cost them a dime. However, they will receive to firsts for him and rule the league for the next decade!

    Posted by jofos February 5, 09 07:41 PM
  1. what a problem to have, 2 great QB's

    Posted by Mickey C February 5, 09 07:44 PM
  1. For any of you who think the Patriots would want the #3 pick in the draft tells me you dont know much about the Pats.that would be a signing bonus around 25 million,now think last year they had the 7th and did not want to pay that bonus $$ so they traded down to 10 th and got Mayo who ,as it turned out were happy to pay him 10 mil bonus A more Patriot thing would be Tony Gonzalez and K C's 2nd round pick this year and 2nd rd pick in 2010 Think about it Detroit is trying to trade their 1st overall pick for multiple lower round picks NO TAKERS no team wants to pay a $ 35 million signing bonus on a unproven athelete

    Posted by gazzzmann February 5, 09 07:44 PM
  1. You're all missing it including all the writers. No one will trade for him. Who would want a QB at $14.5 million on a one year deal... one that would be would be a FREE AGENT at the end of 2009, never mind give up a high draft choice as well. My read is the Pats have doubts that Brady can make it back and will try to work out a long term more attractive tradable deal with Cassel over the next few months.

    Posted by Otis February 5, 09 07:47 PM
  1. Hey!! The Pats should trade Cassel to the Panthers for Peppers (who wants out and wants to play on a 3-4D), turned him into a OLB with Mike Vrabel, Thomas and Mayo in the middle and Bruschi out to sub. See if they can also get a pick out of that trade and sign let's DeAngelo Hall to a 4-year deal or Adrian Wilson at safety if Rodney Harrison decides to retire. There is going to be too many good talent available at free agency that the Pats should not pass on.

    Posted by Christian February 5, 09 07:49 PM
  1. He did a good job. No disrespect but Brady is done! face it pats fans you need Matt! Rex will take the AFC within 2 years> GO JETS

    Posted by doc February 5, 09 07:50 PM
  1. nobody is giving up two firsts for him. his salary puts the pats in a bad spot.'
    other teams may want him but they know deep down the pats want to get rid of him and his franchise salary. so this diminishes his value. you never get what you think you'll get in the nfl. what did the raiders get for randy moss?

    Posted by ed. w. February 5, 09 07:54 PM
  1. You would free more cap room by getting rid of Cassel, not Brady. Getting rid of Brady is a pretty lame idea anyway. Also, what is deGiovanni talking about? Trading both of them and spending 29 mil on defense? And that guy needs a spell check. Trade him for a bit of D and some draft picks. If the draft picks are high then we could always trade down.

    Posted by cb February 5, 09 08:00 PM
  1. Eddie W.: look around the league. If Minnesota had Cassel at QB as opposed to Jackson they would have represented the NFC in the Superbowl. Getting two firsts is absolutely not out of the question!

    Posted by jofos February 5, 09 08:01 PM
  1. I can't believe some of these comments. Seems most folks are forgetting that right now we have NO clue if Tom Brady will be ready to play next season or what shape he'll be in. While I certainly hope he makes a full recovery, this to me was the wisest thing to do. It makes sure we have at least one good quarterback and remain a contending team. It was a pure fluke we weren't in the playoffs and by all rights should have been.

    I doubt anyone knows for sure if Tom will be ready to go next season (although they might know if he won't be). Either way, at least we get something in return if he is, and if he isn't we remain a strong team. Plus given all the money the team has saved over the years, they can IMHO afford to splurge now and again, esp when the stakes are as high as having a capable starting QB. For all they say about the Pats "system," if you don't have a solid QB (and we got VERY lucky with out backups twice now), no system alone will win minus a decent QB.

    Smart move on all fronts, and I doubt Cassel will rush to sign (unless he is sure he will get game time), as the last thing he wants to do is sit on the sidelines all year. He'll want to play somewhere and I doubt he'll lock himself in for one year of $$$ to sit on a bench. You strike while the iron is hot. So win/win for both the Pats and Cassel IMHO

    Posted by Ellen February 5, 09 08:04 PM
  1. Doc: you are dreaming! How's Vernon Gholston doing anyway?

    Posted by jofos February 5, 09 08:06 PM
  1. Boston Fans are SOOOOOO easy to piss off… hahaha
    Look out Buffalo - This could be your year to beat the Pats and the Cassel of shit.
    Go Steelers!

    Posted by Dave February 5, 09 08:13 PM
  1. Otis, read Mike's blog posts. It explains why teams trade for franchise players. They negotiate long-term contracts in advance, and so the Pats are basically just trading his rights -- not the unsigned tender.

    However, worst case scenario -- what IF Cassel signs the tender? The Pats have the option of rescinding it before he can (they'll get nothing for him, but at least they won't be on the hook for the cap hit). OR... they could allow him to sign the tender, and then they can trade him to a team in need of a one-year QB (albeit for less than a first rounder...). And for those of you who think that you can't get much for a guy with only one year left on his contract, two words: Jonathan Vilma.

    Franchising him is really a no-risk proposition.

    Posted by MarkZ February 5, 09 08:16 PM
  1. Pittsburgh paid off the refs in the Super Bowl to win. Look for a hot steaming pile of PayoffGate to be at the NFL's doorstep soon.

    Posted by Toyko February 5, 09 08:21 PM
  1. Ellen: It sounds great in theory and it's a good post, except for one thing: Cassel has played his last snap for the Patriots. He will be traded. Bill B. is a mastermind and didn't draft Kevin O'connel in the third round last year if he couldn't throw the ball but Brady will be ready.

    Posted by jofos February 5, 09 08:25 PM
  1. C'mon Dave from Pittsburgh, is that the besy you have. Don't waste my time!

    Posted by jofos February 5, 09 08:31 PM
  1. cassel just allowed the pats to get a pass rushing olb (sintim) and a center/ol (mack) in the first round. 2 db's in the 2nd(chung/mickens) Thanks Matt..Good Luck

    Posted by heyblue February 5, 09 08:32 PM
  1. Can we cut the talk of "Trade Brady"..bla..bla..bla. That guy is a money-making machine for the Patriots, and he happens to be the best quarterback in the NFL. Why would Kraft or any in their right minds want to trade Brady?

    Posted by Jules February 5, 09 08:46 PM
  1. The Pats will deal Cassel once they are convinced that Brady is on target to return next year. They drafted O'Connell knowing that one day Brady would retire. The injury may hasten that decision. BB is always thinking ahead. Remember when they had Brady and Bledsoe? They waited until draft day, then swindled the Bill for a first rounder that netted them Ty Warren. How'd that work out for us?

    My prediction: Cassel dealt to either Minnesota or San Francisco. They'll get a second round choice this year, a first round choice next year and possibly a depth player on defense. The Pats are masters at making these type of deals.

    Posted by Dave February 5, 09 09:01 PM
  1. Agreed with Jules.

    And Cassel will be traded. The fact that this follows news of Brady making progress is no coincidence. The only alternative to a trade is to keep him around as health insurance, and Belichick has ZERO history of tying up ginormous chunks of the salary cap in insurance players. I suppose the chance of him staying isn't literally nil, but it must be awfully close.

    Posted by El Fuego February 5, 09 09:09 PM
  1. Something is really twisted in anybodies head who even says something like trade Tom Brady. You guys must really thing Bill is an idiot or something. This is Tom Brady were talking about, the guy who has only lost 27 total games in 7 years and won 101. The same guy who has brought home 3 sb rings to Boston. The guy who breaks record after record. The guy is only 31 he will be 32 in Sept. He says the knee injury is coming along fine, he is during a little running and quick count. He will go through extensive training this off season and then he will be fine. He prob will start off slow as Peyton did last season, but he will get back in the mode of it and lead the team back into the playoffs were he's 14 and 3. Now for you idiots saying trade hime , go and name a qb who is playing right now who has 3 sb rings and two sb mvp's. For those watchin football in 09 I want you to see how good Matt who i like alot will be in a diffrent setting than New England with diffrent coaches and recievers. You can't compare Tom to Drew Bledsoe and say trade him because when Tom first stepped on the field his first year he went 12 and 3 and won a sb mvp. Get serious the pats couldn't trade Tom anyway because of the cap charge. Tom still has a contract if you forgot that isn't up till 2010. And I just wish you guys who say trade Brdy could vie into a crystal ball and see nxt season without Tom. With Tom playing every year we have a good oppertunity at going to the Sb. After one bad season or a couple bad games from Cassel and a 9-7 record that will go to the dumps. If Tom is traded after his contract goes up he can go after the big bucks that Peyton is getting. He will be two years past the injury and only 33 the same age as Peyton now. He will lead whatever the team is to a superbowl and win and you no good fans who say trade hime will be looking very stupid. I pray that doesn't happen and that he will remain in New England. He still has 7 more years if he wants to play that long. I can see him retiring with more rings than anyother qb in history with at least 5 rings. Think he can't get only two more watch him. This is the same guy that everyone thought wouldn't be nonthin in 2000. He will prove you way wrong as he did ack then. Gt real how do you trade a qb who compares to only ththe best qb's ever Joe Montana Peyton and others though he doesn't have as many rings and probally want end up with as many as Tom.

    Posted by Trey February 5, 09 09:20 PM
  1. Congratualtions to the Steelers for winning their 6th Superbowl. Why do the Steeler fans keep talking about the Patriots on this site?

    Posted by lesdub February 5, 09 09:25 PM
  1. The franchise tag seals it. Cassel is gone. He's worth many millions now, but no one is going to pay him $14 million (if he does, more power to him). Now stop being a bunch of knuckleheads...wish him the best of luck and hope the Pats get NFL starter type compensation or better.
    Except the trolls. You trolls can go f yourselves

    Posted by good day February 5, 09 09:27 PM
  1. No matter whom they trade, they need to BUILD THE DEFENSE!! It's defense, not shoot-outs, that wins Superbowls.

    Posted by ET February 5, 09 09:43 PM
  1. Nice work pats!

    Posted by Kelly! February 5, 09 09:43 PM
  1. Brady is done.....he is going to be a full time Stetson cologne model. When the Patsy's try and trade him they won't get a used jock strap for him. His knee is shredded.

    Posted by steelerinboston February 5, 09 09:47 PM
  1. The Pats will keep Cassel, unless offered at least a 1st round pick and maybe more. Don't forget, Seattle gave the Pats a 1st round pick for a WR, Deon broken Branch. Most NFL teams are already rummaging through the Pats left-overs for any kind of a piece of the best franchise in football, i.e SF QB JT O'Sullivan. The kid backed up HOF TB and had a great season himself. Mentally, he shows the most important traits a good QB should have, poise/composure mixed with a strong desire to win and still coachable. Physically, he has the entire package, tall, strong, fast... I'm not a GM but even I realize, a choice between a rookie 1st round QB, with a 56% chance of being a bust or a proven NFL commodity, who learned from the best and is in the Prime of his life, is essentially a no brainer. Remember, BB trusted this kid enough to hold the spare keys to the Race Car for a couple for years. That means something in the NFL.
    I'm going predict that if he is traded, he goes to SF or Seattle. Definately NFC. Better middle to late 1st round and early third for picks.

    rookie salaries some of these fools .

    Posted by sophron February 5, 09 10:08 PM
  1. HEY! Stellerinboston dont keep trashing brady what did he do wrong all he did was set records and win us superbowls. Go Back to Pittsburg buddy.

    Posted by Fess February 5, 09 10:17 PM
  1. Cassel deserves a big thank you for saving the franchise's season. That being said, he now gets a huge raise and either plays every down for some team, assuming he's traded before the season starts or starts for the Pats and get moved when some contender's starting QB goes down and Brady is back. Either way he wins and that's the way it should be. Oh yes, and the Pats get quality in return in any deal. We all win. Thanks again Matt.

    Posted by Dogs4Pals February 5, 09 10:32 PM
  1. The Pats aren't going to get squat for him! Who will pay the asking price? Congratulations of having QB's consume 25% of your cap.
    Cassel has you by the short ones and we love it in NY! Brady watch out! There is no loyality in Beantown.

    Posted by Jets fan February 5, 09 10:55 PM
  1. Rumor has it that TB's knee is stiff and perhaps not as stable as it should be. It would be tragic is he is the player who ends up with such an unusually poor result but this may have played into the decision to franchise MC.

    Posted by Hacky February 5, 09 11:31 PM
  1. Anybody remember two guys named Montana and Young? The 49ers traded Montana(at 36) and kept Young and won an average of 12 games a year for the next 8 years. What would Brady bring in a trade? Could he be a modern day Herschel Walker (multiple players and draft picks)? How good could the Patriots be for the next decade with 5 picks in the top 90 for the next three years or so? Gasper, Reiss, somebody answer this question, please?

    Posted by John Shea February 6, 09 02:23 AM
  1. I would not do anything if I were the pats.....just because Brady may be healing wont mean much when he gets a good shot to that spot again.....and then where will they be if Cassel is gone......That defensive line needs an overhaul.....New Engand is cheap and it will be interesting to see if they break down and spend for anyone this season.....

    Posted by Johnnyjammer February 6, 09 02:37 AM
  1. Look for Cassel to be traded to KC on draft day.Let;s see isn/t there a guy named
    Pioli over there now?

    Posted by George Dachowski February 6, 09 08:41 AM
  1. Dave the Steeler fan.
    I used to live in PA, and the Steeler fans I know have a little more class and have at least a GED. I actually enjoy the Pats-Steelers rivalry.
    You guys had a great year. Enjoy it with a little bit of class.
    Nice command of the English language. High five!

    Posted by joe b February 6, 09 10:25 AM
  1. Why would the Pats put out so much money to a guy they may not keep? The short answer is that they wouldn't. There's a pretty good chance Brady may not be ready for next year, or ever. This move proves it.

    Posted by cogito February 6, 09 10:58 AM
  1. Really? You think you'll get 2 first round picks for him? DOUBTFUL, he is a product of Belicheats system and once he leaves he will suck just like all of your ex coaches do. Teams would be stupid to give that up for a guy that has one year experience, plus how did you do vs AFC playoff teams? You got shellacked by the Stillers at home, did Assel prove he can beat good defenses? Umm no, so is he better than say Joe Crackhoe, umm no. He will sit on your bench and happily collect the largest paycheck for a clipboard holder in the history of mankind

    Hey Tom, Hope you enjoy your ring this year! We are enjoying ours....

    Posted by Scott the Stillers Fan February 6, 09 11:21 AM
  1. who cares!!!!!!

    Posted by oscar February 6, 09 04:17 PM
  1. Ha Ha classic, all the Steelers fans going to Boston.com because they can't enjoy their team's 6th SB victory. I wonder if guilt over 4 steroid SB victories and 2 referee-assisted SB victories has anything to do with it.

    Posted by Steeler Guilt? February 7, 09 12:36 PM
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