Three-time Pro Bowler and current Indianapolis Colts backup quarterback Matt Hasselbeck is still looking for his first Super Bowl ring, but he'll need to get it within the next two seasons, as he told Alex Marvez of Fox Sports that he will retire following the 2014 campaign.
Hasselbeck signed with the Colts this past offseason after spending two years as an off-and-on starter for the Tennessee Titans. He knew that he would be firmly behind Andrew Luck on Indy's depth chart, but he provides valuable insurance for a potential Super Bowl team.
“I’d like to do one more year then call it a career,” Hasselbeck said in a telephone interview. “I’m hoping for a good year this year and next. That’s why I’m excited to be here rather than some other place. I feel good about our chances and the team we have. And I believe in Andrew (Luck).”
Is announcing his retirement so far in advance a smart move by Hasselbeck?
Hasselbeck's two-year, $7.25 million contract runs through next season, so he has no intention of signing an extension or going elsewhere when the deal expires.
The 38-year-old veteran is certainly in the twilight of his career, but he is an important player on the Colts' roster. Hasselbeck had a great deal of success with the Seattle Seahawks, whom he led to Super Bowl XL in 2005. The Seahawks fell short against the Pittsburgh Steelers, and Hasselbeck hasn't gotten back to the big game ever since.
Throughout his career, Hasselbeck has totaled 34,554 passing yards with a 60.4 completion percentage. He's thrown 201 touchdowns compared to 147 interceptions in 195 games.
While Hasselbeck won't be the driving force behind the Colts should they make it to Super Bowl XLVIII at MetLife Stadium in February or Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium the following year, he can be a huge help to Luck.
Hasselbeck has a wealth of experience, and he has gone the distance in this league before. Luck has all the talent in the world, but he may not yet be prepared to reach that level. Hasselbeck will make sure that he is, however.
Additionally, Hasselbeck can serve as a capable fill-in should the youngster miss any time along the way.
The Colts are coming off a huge Week 7 win over the Denver Broncos on Sunday night, and they now have to be considered among the AFC's top contenders to make the Super Bowl this year. Hasselbeck will have to live vicariously through Luck if the Colts are able to make it that far, but there is no question that he'll take a ring any way he can get it before he calls it quits.
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