Far from healthy: Matt Hasselbeck's 10 years in the NFL
Matt Hasselbeck has stayed on the field through most of his eight seasons in Seattle, missing only 10 games (including three during the...
Seattle Times staff reporter
Oct. 7, 2001: Missed the first start of his career because of a groin injury that began bothering him in training camp. Games missed: 2
Nov. 11, 2001: Separated his left shoulder during a victory over Oakland. He had an injection of a painkiller and played the next six weeks before exacerbating the injury Dec. 23 against the Giants. Games missed: 2
Jan. 4, 2004: Torn labrum in his non-throwing shoulder, during Seattle's playoff loss to the Packers.
Jan. 18, 2007: Underwent surgery to repair the torn labrum in his left shoulder.
Nov. 14, 2004: Bruised thigh just above his knee when he collided with Shaun Alexander on Seattle's first play of game. Games missed: 1
Jan. 5, 2008: Suffered a thigh contusion in the third quarter of Seattle's playoff victory over Washington when cornerback Fred Smoot floored him.
Dec. 19, 2004: Elbow was injured when he was hit mid-throw by Jets defensive end Shaun Ellis and driven into Bryan Thomas. Games missed: 1
Sept. 11, 2005: Hurt his arm when he was hit by Reggie Hayward in mid-throw. His arm was too sore to do anything more than hand off in practice three days after the game.
Sept. 10, 2006: Suffered rib injury during season-opening victory in Detroit in which he was sacked five times.
Nov. 18, 2007: Suffered bruised ribs against the Bears.
Oct. 22, 2006: Suffered a sprained medial-collateral ligament in his right knee when Minnesota linebacker E.J. Henderson hit him. Games missed: 4
Oct. 5, 2008: Suffered hyperextension of his right knee when he was knocked down on Seattle's first possession against the Giants.
Nov. 27, 2006: Suffered broken index and middle fingers in his non-throwing hand during the Seahawks' game against Packers. He played the rest of the season with a glove on that hand.
Oct. 21, 2007: Suffered a strained oblique against the Rams.
Aug. 8, 2008: Reached for his back after completing a TD to Jordan Kent in the first quarter of an exhibition game in Minnesota. Games missed: 3 exhibition games
Oct. 12, 2008: Weakness in his leg caused by a bulging disk forced him to miss the Packers game. Games missed: 1
Matt Hasselbeck has stayed on the field through most of his eight seasons in Seattle, missing only 10 games (including three during the exhibition season) because of injury. Just don't say he's been healthy that whole time. Far from it, actually.
He has played through a litany of injuries that would fill any doctor's clipboard. He had an injured groin muscle before he started his first game for the Seahawks and by November he was playing with a separated left shoulder severe enough he had to have an injection of painkillers to play. Eventually that gap got too wide to simply medicate him through a game and he missed the final two games.
So the bulging disk in Hasselbeck's back that will keep him out for this week's game in Tampa Bay and is certain to be a question for the rest of the season is just one of the results of playing quarterback and spending a career in the crosshairs of NFL defenses.
"Backs, after you've played 10 years in the league, they become a little problematic," coach Mike Holmgren said. "Honestly, as far as the technical stuff, I wouldn't be able to help you much there."
OK, well let us list the injuries that Hasselbeck has suffered since coming to Seattle in 2001.
Some were serious, like the separated shoulder in 2001. Or the torn labrum he suffered in that same shoulder in a January 2004 playoff game, which he had surgically repaired three years later. The injury that most impacted a season was the sprained knee ligament he suffered in 2006 when Minnesota linebacker E.J. Henderson hit him low after a throw, forcing Hasselbeck to miss the next four games.
He's also suffered broken fingers, bruised ribs and hurt things he didn't even know he had, like the oblique muscle he strained while playing against St. Louis in October 2007.
"I'm kind of excited," Hasselbeck said after that game. "They told me I tweaked my oblique, which is awesome because I didn't know I had any obliques."
Many injuries, Hasselbeck just kept quiet. Like his right arm that ached after the season opener in 2005 when Hasselbeck was hit in mid-throw late in a loss in Jacksonville.
"I feel like I played a game yesterday," Hasselbeck said the day after the loss. "That's what it feels like."
Really? You weren't pulverized in that loss?
"Pretty normal," he said.
Earlier this season, he referenced the 2005 loss in Jacksonville and how difficult it was to prepare for the Week 2 game against Atlanta because of the arm injury.
"We went into Week 2 against Atlanta, I couldn't throw the ball more than 15, 30 yards," Hasselbeck said.
That's life for an NFL quarterback, where bumps and bruises are downright benign compared to the broken bones and bulging disks that can be commonplace.
• The Seahawks signed rookie running back Justin Forsett to the 53-man roster today, promoting him from the team's practice squad. The Seahawks released Michael Bumpus, former Washington State wide receiver, to make room for Forsett.
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