Patriots 48, Dolphins 28: Matt Cassel's Bank Account Is Smiling
Matt Cassel has come in and taken total control of the Patriots offense, leading them to a 48-28 win at Miami. The win puts New England in a tie with Indianapolis and Baltimore for a wildcard spot.
Cassel threw for at least 400 yards for the second straight week; becoming the first quarterback to do so since the immortal Billy Volek did it in 2004. In fact, he becomes one of five quarterbacks to toss for 400+ yards in consecutive games since the NFL-AFL merger in 1970 (Phil Simms, Dan Marino and Dan Fouts are the others).
That's some company to keep when you nothing more than a stand-in for last year's MVP. By the way, Brady has thrown just one 400-yard game in his career. Cassel's asking price this offseason just got a little bigger.
Randy Moss benefitted from Cassel's huge game by catching eight passes for 125 yards and three touchdowns. If not for the fact that this wasn't Tom Brady tossing the passes, you'd swear it was 2007 all over again.
New England still trails the New York Jets by a game in the AFC East standings and have a huge game next week with the Steelers.
Miami's lofty goal of a playoff berth isn't over but it is damaged. The Phins fall to a game back of the wildcard chase and two games back of the Jets in the division. While their opponents don't all look stellar, Miami has a tough road to end the season. Four of their five remaining games are on the road ... including trips to the Bills and Jets.