Before I made an emotional decision on which QB I’d like to see behind center next year, I did my diligent research. I had available the "NFL Replay" recordings of the Chiefs
game (one of Cassel’s best of this season) of 10/31, and the Chiefs-Packers
game, (Orton’s debut), as well as the "Quick Cut" of the Chiefs’ final game vs. the Donks.
Cassel displays a serious case of "happy feet". Before he delivers a pass, he bounces around like a school boy. I’m not talking about one forward hop, I’m talking about three or more hops. The only times I did not see the hops were on three quick passes in the flat to Dex, and one ball thrown off the back foot to Breaston. To be fair, I saw Orton hop on two occasions, also. In general, however, Orton’s throwing motion is more compact; he targets a receiver, the arm goes back and the ball is gone.
On a game earlier in the season (perhaps the first Charger’s game) I heard an announcer comparing Cassel to the opposition’s QB. The announcer said that the opposition QB could throw the ball through a porthole at 30 yards, but at 30 yards Cassel could only throw the ball through a window. Sounds kind of cheesy, right? In the Donks’ game, on 1/1/12, Orton threw two passes to Bowe that had to be perfectly thrown. Both were. On one up on the right sideline, Orton threw the ball just over Baily, where Bowe at the apogee of his jump, just was able to get both hands on the ball, and come down with both feet in bounds. That was throwing a ball through a porthole (incidentally, no "happy feet")! In the Raiders
’ game, Orton’s last completion, to Copper, was also thrown in the only place the defender could not defend it. The point I’m making is that Orton’s accuracy is superior to Cassel’s.
Orton’s arm strength seems to be superior to Cassel’s. I can best illustrate this by comparing one pass each made. In the Chargers’ game, Cassel threw a 39 yd TD pass to Baldwin. Cassel looked like a school boy, hopping forward twice in his throwing motion. The ball arrived at the right place, at the right time, but with apparently more effort. In the Denver game, Orton targeted Baldwin again for a 40 yd play. His throwing motion was more compact; his arm went back, back foot planted, arm came forward, ball gone. The ball was on a line, and was on target.
Next, let’s talk about clutch play, engineering drives when the game was on the line. First, in the Chargers’ game, Cassel had one clutch opportunity, in OT. He got the job done, with only one difficult play, a pass over the middle to Breaston, thrown off the back foot. Three completions were thrown in the right flat to Dex. Orton had only one near-clutch opportunity in the GB game, after GB had gone ahead 7-6. Orton did respond with three consecutive scoring drives to put the game out of reach. In the Raiders’ game, Orton defined the word "clutch". The Raiders took the lead 13-6 with 2:09 left in the game. Orton drove the team 80 yds to tie the score. Our D stopped the Raiders, and we got the ball back with only 18 seconds to go, 2 TO’s, and around 35 yds to go for FG range. Orton completed two consecutive passes to put us in range. It isn’t his fault that we couldn’t handle Seymour. There was no "come from behind" necessary in Denver.
Considering the coaching change and the clearing up of the communication between QB & coaches, these were the only areas I could evaluate that were clearly QB-controlled.
This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.