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Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Joey Porter: Cassel 'shouldn't be that hard'


 
 Stew Milne-US PRESSWIRE and Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images
 Joey Porter, right, appears to have given away the Dolphins game plan: "... Throw the kitchen sink at [Cassel]. That's what we're going to do."

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Graham

DAVIE, Fla. -- Grab a thumbtack, Patriots Nation.

Miami Dolphins OLB Joey Porter has some bulletin-board material for you.

Porter, who has a stellar track record for throwing verbal salvos at the opposition, fired some jabs Wednesday at New England Patriots QB Matt Cassel.

"I just know he's not a Tom Brady," Porter said. "So if it's not Tom Brady, it shouldn't be that hard."

The Patriots have won 21 straight regular-season games. The Dolphins have lost 20 of their past 21 games. The Patriots destroyed the Dolphins last year by a combined score of 77-35.

Yet Porter said "It'll be good to go out there and get our first victory."

Porter announced the Dolphins defense is going to come after Cassel.

"You treat him like you treat a backup," Porter said. "How do you prepare for a backup? He don't get that many snaps, right? So you throw the kitchen sink at him. That's what we're going to do."

Cassel became the Patriots' starting quarterback in Week 1, when Tom Brady suffered a season-ending knee injury. Cassel came off the sideline and beat the Kansas City Chiefs. He started last Sunday's victory over the New York Jets. The last time Cassel had started at QB was as a high school senior in 1999.

"He's a guy we'll prepare for, but that was his first start since high school," Porter said. "So you can take all the reps you want to. This is a totally different game, a totally different league. He's only had one start in the NFL. Take that for what it's worth. He won it, but if you compare him to Brady, there's no comparison.

"You can say whatever you want to put with it. Those are just the facts. That's what it is. It means what it means."

As for defending against the same targets Brady enjoyed (Randy Moss, Wes Welker, Jabar Gaffney and maybe Ben Watson), Porter said: "The receivers are still going to be the same receivers. But they can't get the ball like they were used to getting it when Brady was there."

While there's an NFL tradition to publicly bemoan the loss of an opposing starter and talk about wanting to go up against the best players each week, Porter said he won't turn down victories against second-stringers.

"I want to win the game," Porter said. "It doesn't matter who they have back there, throwing the ball, running the ball. ... We'll take a victory around here any way you can get it.

"I'm not going to be mad because [Brady] ain't out there and we get the backup. If we get a victory for the rest of the season against all backups, I'll take 14 wins against 14 backups and feel good about it."