Ok, so far everything that I have read since Matt Cassel was franchised has been about the risk of the Vikings making a serious move towards acquiring the services of Mr. Cassel.
First, you are all correct. Matt Cassel did take over, arguably, one of the best offenses of all time. With Randy Moss, Wes Welker, and a grade A offensive line. And was given game plans by the best coaching staff in the NFL.
Yes, his success could be in large part due to the situation by which he was thrust into.
Yes, the Vikings would have to compensate the patriots heavily, not 2 first rounders heavily, but heavily, to be able to *pry* Cassel away. (Side note: I believe Tom Brady to be on his way to a full recovery and hence the reasoning for the franchise is to make sure that the Pats can get full value for losing him, not so that they can ensure they can keep him.)
Yes, the Vikings would have to give Cassel a hefty multi-year contract.
Yes, there is no way of knowing for certain that Cassel can play at a high level outside of the Patriots system and personnel.
This all creates a huge risk. Money, time, other players. I think its fair to say, that most of us understand the risk...
Let us not forget about the potential reward. Matt Cassel could be the next face of quarterbacking in this league. He stepped into a pressure situation, after not truly playing since high school! Since HIGH SCHOOL! Think about that. And he stepped up. He stepped up big time. This could be an opportunity for the Vikings to pick up a true franchise quarterback. He might turn out to be a true superstar. That is a distinct possibility. It is. For real. It is.
So you have to ask yourself: How often does a possibility like this arise?
*cue Jeopardy music*
...Well.... Ummm... The draft? HA! Roll the dice three times on a top 5 pick and you would be lucky to get one QB who can step in his first 16 games and perform half as well as Cassel, even if you gave him that offensive talent...Seriously. You guys are gonna tell me that TJack coulda done that? HA! You're blinded by your own bias and hopes.
...Ok....How about free agency? Ummm... I can't really remember any QB off the top of my head that has hit free agency with this kind of upside...None... Maybe some at the bottom end of their career...but not young ones.
...Well... On other teams through a trade? Yes. Once in a while. Which is the situation we are looking at right now.
So, the question is, should the Vikings take a shot? Its a risk but there is certainly a potential reward. A huge reward. A reward that can thrust an entire organization towards greatness.
My guess is that the Vikes front office studies every bit of tape they have on this guy, every piece of information, puts together the puzzle, and tries to figure out exactly what their risk tolerance is. My guess is they will make an attempt at him. They will find the price they are willing to pay, and if they can snatch him for that they will, if they can't....Enter Jeff Garcia?...
And a little more...
For those of you who think I am giving Cassel too much credit... Remember, also, that he has learned from Tom Brady, Belichick, and the rest of his staff. This is a good thing. Kind of takes away the need for Chilly to try and coach some fundamentals of being a NFL QB, because he has already been coached them. And keep in mind, unlike Derek Anderson, most QB's get better with experience and a year under their belt. I mean, Cassel could just be at the beginning of a huge upward swing (I suppose thats the whole message of this post...). ALSO, if you listen to the *ahem* experts on espn you will hear all the time that QB'ing in the NFL is about alot of things, but when you break down all the Great QB's throughout the NFL they have one thing in common... The intangibles. The things that can't really be taught. They show up differently in every QB... Well, I ask you, do you think, getting thrust into a starting role on the first day of a season for the super bowl favorite, replacing one of the best QB's of all time, after not starting a game since high school, and throwing almost 3700 yards and 20+ TDs and leading your team to an 11-5 record qualifies as having something special? Some intangible skill set, ability, or mentality? I certainly believe it says something.
To me it says, potential. I say its worth a risk. A contract and some draft picks, risk. Double down, Roll the dice. Hope we roll the 7... If we hit, oh how nice it will be. If we miss, it will hurt. But, when all is said and done...its simply risk vs. reward.