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Chiefs likely to keep Cassel over Orton

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Recent posts by Eli Kaberon

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Posted Dec. 30, 2011 @ 1:23 p.m. ET
By Eli Kaberon

We know that the Chiefs will kick off the 2012 season with a different head coach than they started 2011 with. Will there be a new starting quarterback too?

According to a source, the odds are likely that Matt Cassel — assuming he recovers fully, as expected, from hand surgery — returns to lead the team next season. Cassel has a good relationship with the team's receivers and is a favorite of GM Scott Pioli, the man responsible for selecting the new head coach and structuring the roster.

Kyle Orton, who has started the final three games of the regular season, is a free agent and is unlikely to return. Though his performance has been solid, we hear Orton wants to find a team where he will be given a chance to start. That does not appear to be the case in Kansas City if Cassel is brought back.

However, the source stated that the Chiefs are expected to add a quarterback at some point during the offseason, likely in the draft. After Pioli saw the team crumble with Tyler Palko in the lineup, he would like a more reliable backup in case Cassel is hurt again. The team was hoping 2011 fifth-round pick Ricky Stanzi would be that player, but he hasn't developed at the rate the team expected.

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