Carroll: ‘We want him back’

  • By John Boyle Herald Writer
  • Wednesday, January 12, 2011 12:29pm
  • Sports

RENTON — Matt Hasselbeck’s future with the Seattle Seahawks, or a lack thereof, will be one of the biggest topics of the team’s offseason.

And while a decision isn’t likely to come in the immediate future on the 35-year-old quarterback, who is in the final year of the

six-year contract he signed after the 2004 season, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll did say Wednesday that he hopes to have Hasselbeck back next season.

“Certainly it’s a big topic for us,” Carroll said. “We love what Matt’s done and we’re going to do everything we can to keep him here, of course. But we don’t know the timelines or how that’s going to work out and all that kind of stuff, but it’s a big issue for us that we’re looking forward to. He’s had a terrific run for us and we want to see what we can do to keep that going.”

Asked if that means he wants to re-sign Hasselbeck, Carroll said, “Yeah, we do want him back.”
Now saying that and actually re-signing Hasselbeck are two very different things. Carroll said not long after taking the job that he hoped to re-sign receiver Nate Burleson, but Burleson ended up in Detroit. But the fact that Carroll says he wants to do “everything we can to keep him here,” and that Hasselbeck a week earlier said he hopes to retire a Seahawk would seem to increase the chances of Hasselbeck returning to the team next season.

It was less than a month ago that Hasselbeck was benched in a loss to Atlanta after throwing his 10th interception in a four-game span, but Carroll stuck with Hasselbeck, who bounced back with a four-touchdown game against New Orleans that ranked among the best games in his career.
Hasselbeck was not available to reporters Wednesday, but was asked about Carroll’s comments while on a conference call with the Chicago media.

“That’s the first I’ve heard of that,” he said. “I didn’t know he said that. We’ve had good communication all year long, even going back to training camp, even going back to March when they made a trade (for Charlie Whitehurst).

“They’re looking for the next guy here,” Hasselbeck said. “I know that, I get that. I’m not trying to concern myself with that; I’m just trying to play the best football that I can play. … The only thing I can do that controls that is that I can play well. That’s all I’m trying to do right now, and hopefully, we can get this thing turned all the way around in Seattle. We had a nice first step winning our division this year, and I was here when we were winning — we were owning — our division year after year after year after year after year. That’s a great feeling. It’s a great place to be in. That’s kind of been our goal here. If we can get that done here and I can be a part of it, that’d be awesome. If not, I understand.”

Carroll optimistic about Tatupu

Linebacker Lofa Tatupu, who suffered a concussion late in Saturday’s win over New Orleans, did not practice Wednesday, but Carroll remains confident that the captain of Seattle’s defense will be able to play this weekend.

“So far his tests have gone very well, it looks very favorable for him to play in this game,” Carroll said.
Tatupu was the only player to miss practice Wednesday.

Herald Writer John Boyle: jboyle@heraldnet.com. For more Seahawks coverage, check out the Seahawks blog at heraldnet.com/seahawksblog

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