Father of New England QB dies

Dec. 10, 2008 at 8:47 PM

SAN JOSE, Calif., Dec. 10 (UPI) -- New England quarterback Matt Cassel has left the team following the death of his father, Greg Cassel, Monday in Northridge, Calif.

The cause of death of Greg Cassel, a noted script writer, was not disclosed.

Coach Bill Belichick said Matt Cassel's return is "day-by-day."

The Patriots face the Raiders in Oakland Sunday, and are preparing in San Jose after their 24-21 win at Seattle last weekend.

"From a football standpoint, we'll just handle it like we normally do," Belichick told reporters following Wednesday's practice. "Right now, we''re just taking it day-to-day. He's going to take care of what he has to do."

Matt Cassel, a Southern California graduate, is the NFL's ninth-rated passer, having completed 283-of-442 throws for 3,052 yards with 14 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.

If he does return for Sunday's contest, his likely replacement will be Kevin O'Connell, a rookie from San Diego State.

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