Romeo Crennel names Matt Cassel starting Chiefs QB, gives answer on Charles

By Josh Katzowitz | NFL Writer

While Romeo Crennel doesn't seem to know why his top running back Jamaal Charles only received five carries on Sunday, at least the Chiefs coach knows this: He's going back to Matt Cassel as his starting quarterback.

That was the bottom line Tuesday when Crennel announced that Cassel, who was the starter for the first six weeks of the season before he was knocked out with a concussion, will start in place of Brady Quinn -- who won't be available also because of a concussion. Crennel also said Ricky Stanzi, who was inactive last week, will be the backup for Cassel.

This announcement, of course, makes sense, even if the quarterback situation in Kansas City seems completely hopeless no matter who's taking the snaps.

But Crennel also furrowed my brow on Sunday when he was asked why Charles got less than a half-dozen carries against the Raiders (backup running back Peyton Hillis took only four carries).

"Now, that I'm not exactly sure," Crennel said.

He was asked if Charles was healthy, and Crennel responded, “As far as I know.”

That's not good, right? I mean, in a perfect world, a coach would know why certain things happen on the team of which he's in charge.

Well, Crennel got a mulligan during Monday's press conference, and this is what he said (via Fox Sports Kansas City):

“I don't keep track of the count [of plays for Charles]. I stand on the sideline and see the rotation and see who goes in and who goes out. Jamaal definitely got the most touches of any running back in the game. Granted, it wasn't 33 [like against New Orleans], but it was the most of anyone. It was the most -- that's running and passing.

“If you look back to when he ran the ball 33 times, we were gaining some yards, so sure you're going to keep running. We had success so we could keep running the ball. …

“Look, it's really simple sometimes. If it's working, you keep calling it. If it isn't, you try something else. That's what we're doing. [Sunday], we weren't running well, so we tried something else.”

At some point, Crennel might want to take the same approach with the offense as a whole.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, and subscribe to our Pick-6 Podcast and NFL newsletter. You can follow Josh Katzowitz on Twitter here: @joshkatzowitz.

 
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