Matt Hasselbeck: Latest News, Rumors, Speculation on Veteran QB's NFL Future

Danny Webster@@DannyWebster21Analyst III

Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano and quarterback Matt Hasselbeck (8) before an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans in Indianapolis, Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
Darron Cummings/Associated Press

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Matt Hasselbeck is entering free agency and facing a decision over whether he wants to extend his career.

Continue for updates.

Hasselbeck Comments on Time with Colts

Monday, Feb. 29

Matt Hasselbeck @Hasselbeck

Amazing experience w/ Colts. My family & I are grateful to you Indianapolis. Many great friends, you will be missed! https://t.co/3RVNuXOl6M

Hasselbeck Unlikely to Return to Colts

Sunday, Feb. 28

Michael Silver of Sports Illustrated reported that if Hasselbeck decides to return for another season, he doesn't expect the quarterback to do so with the Colts, noting it's the "team's choice, not his."

Ian Rapoport of NFL Network added the Colts plan on Josh Freeman being Andrew Luck's backup.

Hasselbeck Comments on Future

Thursday, Feb. 11

During an interview on Brock and Salk on ESPN 710 in Seattle on Thursday, the veteran quarterback said retirement is not in the immediate cards, and he's "strongly leaning" toward playing in 2016.

Sean Wagner-McGough of CBS Sports provided a transcript of Hasselbeck's interview:

Even for me, likely being a backup, you've got to have the mindset that you might have to start -- or get to start -- 16 games and then some. So you've kind of got to count the cost of what it would mean, what you're saying yes to and what you're saying no to. My kids are getting older. But all in all, I would say I'm strongly leaning towards playing again, and we'll see.

On Oct. 20, 2013, Hasselbeck said that the 2014 season would be his last, per Fox Sports (via John Breech of CBS Sports), but almost eight months later, he told ESPN.com's Mike Wells that he had second thoughts.

Hasselbeck Dealt with Injury in Relief of Luck

It turns out that Hasselbeck may have plenty left in the tank after a strong eight-game effort in relief of Luck. The Colts' franchise quarterback missed two games at the beginning of the year after suffering a separated shoulder, per NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, and the team ruled him out for the rest of the year in Week 10 after he suffered a lacerated kidney, per Gregg Rosenthal of Around the NFL

Hasselbeck completed nearly 61 percent of his passes and threw for nine touchdowns while going 5-3 in relief of Luck.

If Hasselbeck does decide to return, that's good news for teams looking for a veteran presence behind a franchise quarterback. While he isn't as impactful as he was earlier in his career, Hasselbeck has proven himself as a steady quarterback who would be a solid insurance policy.

All stats courtesy of Pro-Football-Reference.com.

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