NFL Free Agency: 5 Reasons the Seattle Seahawks Should Let Matt Hasselbeck Walk

Jim BerdyszCorrespondent IApril 7, 2011

NFL Free Agency: 5 Reasons the Seattle Seahawks Should Let Matt Hasselbeck Walk

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    We all knew this day would eventually come. Some of us thought it would have ended sooner between both sides, but it is only now that we really feel a sense of parting ways in the City of Seattle. 

    Seattle Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck has been the heart and soul of the Seattle sports world since he arrived in 2001.

    With many teams getting younger, and the NFL Draft playing a bigger role in the game of football than ever before, is it time we all said goodbye to Hasselbeck as the Seahawks quarterback?

    It definitely looks that way, as the longtime Seattle star recently turned down the latest Seahawks offer which in a sense makes many fans wonder if the free agent wants out.

    Instead of making offers for Hasselbeck though, why can't Seattle just let him walk? I mean, it's time to move on, right? 

    Here are the top 5 reasons why the Seahawks should let Hasselbeck leave Seattle before the 2011 season:

5. 10 Great Seasons in Seattle Is Long Enough

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    Whether it's a longtime friend or your favorite vacation spot, it's always hard to say goodbye.

    In reality, Seahawks fans have essentially grown up with Hasselbeck over the last decade, not only enjoying the game of football together, but learning a great deal about each other along the way.  

    But let's face it, while many of you would want to see him at Qwest Field for many years to come, he can't be the starter forever.

    Yes, there is no doubt he still has some gas left in the tank, but at this point in his career, it's about time to let go.

    Hasselbeck has definitely had some memorable seasons in Seattle, becoming not only the Seahawks all-time leader with 29,579 passing yards, but also the leader for most pass attempts and completions in his Seattle career as well (2,572 completions / 4,279 attempts).

    Now is the perfect opportunity to capitalize on the future of the Seattle Seahawks, and life after Hasselbeck in the Emerald City.

     

4. He May Want to Leave

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    Don't get me wrong on this one, there is no doubt Hasselbeck loves the City of Seattle, the 12th Man, and every last fan in the stands, but you have to wonder: How many more dismal seasons can Hasselbeck go through before he calls it quits?

    Since Hasselbeck led the Seahawks to Super Bowl XL against the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2006, Seattle has gone just 35-45 over the last five seasons. In fact, over the past three seasons it has been worse, as the Seahawks have managed to post a record of just 16-32.

    At this point in his career, Hasselbeck may want one last chance for a Super Bowl title, to go to a winning team where he could leave the game as a champion. If Seattle doesn't let him go, he probably will never get the opportunity again.

    It certainly has to be in the back of Hasselbeck's mind that he in a sense could eventually become a veteran backup, or second-string mentor on a young team. If this is the case, he will live out the rest of his career wearing a headset and holding a clipboard instead of being out on the field, and pushing himself one last time.

Does He Want to Leave Because "They" Could Be Reunited?

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    You could say former Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren and Hasselbeck were really meant for each other in the NFL.

    Could the two really reunite again at this point of their careers—this time with the Cleveland Browns?

    Never say never, as this could be Hasselbeck's one last ditch effort to play under the coach that was there for him from the very beginning.

    If he can't find a winning team to flee to early on as a free agent, Cleveland definitely becomes a top destination for Hasselbeck, as he could not only be a great mentor for Browns quarterback Colt McCoy, but could easily become the starter if McCoy struggles early on.

    We all seen Holmgren already trade for his former backup Seneca Wallace last season, so Hasselbeck has a legitimate opportunity to come to Cleveland as well.

    If Hasselbeck is in fact let go by Seattle, I would bet anything that Holmgren will have his quarterback's number ready to call on speed dial.

3. At 36 Years Old, Hasselbeck Is Too Old

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    Without counting Hasselbeck who turns 36 years old in September, can you guess how many quarterbacks at 35 years or older currently start in the NFL?

    Try two; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning, and Tennessee Titans journeyman Kerry Collins.

    That it.

    What makes Hasselbeck so special that he still needs a starting quarterback job? While he did throw for over 3,000 yards for the second consecutive year, his 12 touchdowns in 2010 (excluding an injury ridden 2008 season) were his lowest total since he threw for seven touchdowns, in his very first season with the Seahawks in 2001.

    If that isn't a sign of possible things to come for the longtime Seattle quarterback then I don't know what is, as it could very well be all over for No. 8 fairly soon.

     

     

2. Jake Locker

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    Out with the old and in with the new.

    Could Seahawks fans be looking at their new franchise quarterback in Washington Huskies star Jake Locker? It's definitely a strong possibility.

    It's almost as if the writing is on the wall if Seattle parts ways with Hasselbeck. Not only would they bring in a new face to the franchise in Locker, but he is also a native of Washington, which would bring a great hometown talent to a team starving for a change.

    I don't know about you, but come this time next year, I see many Seattle fans putting away their No. 8 jerseys and instead, wearing a Seahawks jersey with the name "Locker" across the back.

    It could very well be destiny with the No. 25 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.

1. Go Out On a High Note

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    Let's face it, if Hasselbeck and the Seahawks do part ways, fans should in no way be booing or looking down upon their great quarterback.

    He gave the city everything he could in the ten seasons he was there, and simply did the best he could. Hasselbeck may have never won a Super Bowl for Seattle, but I'm sure many fans will still be telling stories of the franchise's passing leader even after he is long gone.

    We will all remember both his strengths and his weaknesses during his time as a Seahawk, and of course, this past season's Wild Card playoff game.

    It was a game where Hasselbeck not only lead the Seahawks to the stunning upset against the reining Super Bowl champion, New Orleans Saints, but played in arguably one of the best games in his career. And yet, he did it in front of his family, you die-heart Seahawks fans, and of course, the 12th man at Qwest Stadium.

    What a way to go out with a win in your very last home game if you ask me.