Cleat Geeks

Cassel at QB in Big D

New England Patriots v Dallas CowboysIRVING, Texas (AP) — Matt Cassel’s biggest concern when he was traded from Buffalo to Dallas was the timing of the birth of his fourth child. But with the announcement of Cassel being the starting quarterback last week, there’s a deadline with his wife just days away from delivering. Cassel will be the starting quarterback when the Cowboys visit the New York Giants on Oct. 25, after their bye.

”We will get it out before then,” Cassel said with a smile as reporters broke out in laughter. ”Right, honey? I love you. Lot of walking. Lot of walking.”

Coach Jason Garrett made Cassel the starter last Wednesday after Brandon Weeden lost all three of his starts in place of the injured Tony Romo. Dallas is also promoting rookie guard La’el Collins, a projected first-round pick from LSU who wasn’t selected because his name surfaced in the investigation of a woman’s death days before the draft.

weeden&RomoThe defending NFC East champion Cowboys (2-3) were inconsistent on offense with Weeden and need at least one win, perhaps two, to stay in contention in the next four games without Romo. He’s out at least that long with a broken left collarbone.

”We just felt like we wanted to give Matt an opportunity to be in this role and see if we can get our offense going a little bit more and get our team going a little bit more,” Garrett said.

In Cassel, Dallas is picking someone with more experience – and more wins. Cassel made 71 starts for New England, Kansas City and Minnesota and has 33 wins to just five for Weeden, although both have losing records for their careers.

The Dallas offense has posed little threat down the field with Weeden, and the running game has struggled with extra defenders closer to the line of scrimmage. In their 30-6 loss to New England, the Cowboys went without a touchdown for the first time since kicking six field goals in an 18-16 win over Washington in 2011. Romo played that game with cracked ribs.

”This position has an impact on the entire offensive unit maybe more than any other position and certainly has an impact on how the team is performing,” Garrett said. ”Sometimes that’s fair. Sometimes that’s unfair. That’s the nature of this position.”

DallasCasselCassel grew up a fan of the Cowboys because his late father was from Lubbock in West Texas. He followed them when Dallas won three Super Bowls in four years with an offense powered by Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Michael Irvin. Now he’s trying to find a way to win with an offense missing Romo and star receiver Dez Bryant after the Cowboys let NFL rushing champion DeMarco Murray go to Philadelphia in free agency.

”The guys in this room can win ballgames,” Cassel said. ”There’s no doubt about it.” The 33-year-old will make his 92nd appearance next week in his 11th season.

”I know how hard it is to get on the field in this league,” Cassel said. ”At the same time, it’s always been a dream of mine to play for the Cowboys, let alone to be a starter for the Cowboys.”

On Saturday Mrs. Cassel delivered. A new Cassel, Clay Cassel was brought into the world. “He is healthy, and we are very blessed,” said an elated Matt Cassel. Now the question is can the other Cassel deliver on Sunday?

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