Matt Cassel cut by Chiefs, signs with Minnesota Vikings

Matt Cassel was cut by the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday, but it didn't take him long to find a new home.

The USC product has signed on with the Minnesota Vikings as a backup to Christian Ponder, according to the Associated Press, citing a source.

Cassel's departure from Kansas City was highly anticipated after the team traded for Alex Smith, who was introduced as Kansas City's new gunslinger in a news conference on Wednesday.

Throw in the signing of former Mizzou QB Chase Daniel, and there wasn't much room left for Cassel on the roster.

The Chiefs had been trying to trade Cassel for a late-round draft pick but, having found no suitors, decided to release him and carve out additional space under the salary cap. He would have made a base salary of $7.5 million this season.

Cassel was the first major acquisition by the Chiefs under previous general manager Scott Pioli, and he was quickly given a six-year, $63 million contract prior to the 2009 season.

Cassel took the Chiefs to the playoffs in 2010, but has led dismal seasons the last two years. He only saw action in nine games each in 2011 and 2012.  He sustained a season-ending hand injury two years ago, and then lost his job to Quinn after sustaining a concussion last season, spending the rest of the year as the backup.

Cassel had two years remaining on his contract. He spent four seasons in New England prior to coming to Kansas City, backing up Tom Brady the first three and starting the final 15 games of 2008 after the Chiefs knocked Brady out in the first game of the year.

The Patriots sent Cassel to Kansas City, along with linebacker Mike Vrabel, for a second round pick in the 2009 NFL draft.

The Associated Press Contributed to this Report

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