Hawks' Matt Hasselbeck still out
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck did not practice again because of a stiff back on Wednesday, and he may also miss his second consecutive preseason game against San Diego.
The Associated Press
RENTON, Wash. — Seattle Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck did not practice again because of a stiff back on Wednesday, and he may also miss his second consecutive preseason game against San Diego.
Coach Mike Holmgren is trying to ensure Hasselbeck is ready for the regular-season opener Sept. 7 at Buffalo.
"Absolutely, your starting quarterback has to be ready for the first regular-season game," Holmgren said after No. 3 quarterback Charlie Frye again took most of the snaps Wednesday morning -- just as he is likely to do on Monday night against the Chargers.
"(With) the guys that have played as long as he has played ... you are not quite as concerned about their minutes in the preseason," Holmgren said of Hasselbeck. "Now, I want him to feel better, that's my main concern, but as far as not playing or not getting enough reps, I don't worry about that too much."
Hasselbeck first felt his back tighten while completing seven of eight passes for 70 yards and a touchdown in two sharp series of the preseason opener Aug. 8 at Minnesota.
That could be the only game action for the three-time Pro Bowler before the opener. Seattle has just one practice day between Monday's game and the preseason finale against Oakland on Aug. 29.
"We're going to take it a day at a time and just see how he feels," Holmgren said when asked if he would shut down Hasselbeck until the week before the regular season.
When asked if this was a setback or if he was any more concerned with Hasselbeck now that he's out again, Holmgren flatly said, "No. He'll be fine."
Seattle is already missing its two top receivers with Bobby Engram out until perhaps October with a broken shoulder and Deion Branch six months into recovery from reconstructive knee surgery. The Seahawks also have a rookie starting tight end, John Carlson, and three new running backs -- Julius Jones, T.J. Duckett and former backup Maurice Morris -- replacing former league MVP Shaun Alexander. Seattle released Alexander in the spring.
Hasselbeck, who arrived to be Seattle's starter in 2001 after being Brett Favre's backup in Green Bay, made his third Pro Bowl last season. He set Seattle records for pass attempts (562), completions (352) and yards (3,966) despite bruised ribs, a sometimes porous offensive line and no effective running game.
"He's a very good player," Holmgren said, emphasizing "very."
Hasselbeck was in uniform for Saturday's preseason win in overtime against Chicago but watched Frye play the entire game. After he returned to fully participate in practice Monday, Hasselbeck said, "I felt fine. If I felt stiff it's because I was standing around too much."
He added he "absolutely" would play in San Diego. Then he left Tuesday morning's drills after 45 minutes and has been in the training room since. Holmgren said it was too early to know Hasselbeck's status for Monday's game.
"Matt's back is still pretty tight and sore," the coach said. "We're resting this up and treating this thing. And we'll see how it goes."
Backup quarterback Seneca Wallace was again limited in practice with a sore groin, leaving Frye to run the first and second-team units.
Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company
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