MET has emerged as target in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). However, clinical data on MET inhibition in HNSCC are limited. HNSCC biopsies and cell lines were tested for MET activity. The response of cell lines to BAY-853474 was tested in proliferation assays. The prognostic value of MET expression was also analyzed. HNSCC cell lines do not respond to MET inhibition. MET-dependent gastric cancer cell lines have much higher levels of MET expression and phosphorylation than HNSCC cell lines. Clinical samples of HNSCC contain much less MET than responsive models. No clinical response to MET inhibitors in monotherapy may be expected in unselected cases of HNSCC. Only selected patients with MET amplifications should be treated with MET inhibitors. Patients with increased MET immunoreactivity have shorter overall survival. MET might be useful as marker for the detection of patients with more aggressive types of HNSCC.