Matt Hasselbeck met with the media on Thursday as he does every week and shared his thoughts on this Sunday’s matchup with the Rams as well as opening the window a little on how he gets ready for game day.
As always, it’s interesting and insightful stuff from the Seahawks QB. You’ll be surprised, for instance, what he’s listening to when he puts on the headphones and sits in front of his locker on Sunday mornings in the hours before kickoff.
Here’s some of his interview:
Are the Rams better than last year?: “They’re playing a lot better. This team could clearly be 3-0. They’ve been in some really tight games. They do a real nice job with their blitz packages. I’m not sure what’s going on offensively, but defensively they’re coming up with turnovers, they’re causing fumbles, they’re getting after the quarterback. They’re doing everything. They must be pretty smart because they run every coverage, every blitz, every front and you don’t see a lot of mental errors.”
Have you changed your mindset because of Pete Carroll’s emphasis on taking care of the ball?: “I think everyone has had to adjust a little bit. I’m not sure we’ve realized the fulfillment of what he’s trying to get us to do and be. There’s a fine line. He wants to protect the ball, but he also is very aggressive and wants to take shots. He wants big plays and explosive gains, so you kind of have to give him both things.”
What do your team’s 10 straight wins against St. Louis mean?: “It probably means they’re hungry and we have to be ready.”
How long does it take to work in with a veteran receiver like Brandon Stokley?: “Hopefully it doesn’t take long. We’ll see. He’s obviously a very talented guy who has done a lot in this league. He knows this system. I think he knows this system. I hope he knows this system. But he’s done a good job and with the weapons we already have, he brings something extra to the table and complements what we already have and makes us harder to defend.”
What do you listen to on Sunday’s before a game to get ready?: “I could let you in on my secret right now. … Typically what I’ll do is have noise-cancellation head phones on, but it isn’t plugged into anything. I just don’t want to hear people or their music. I just need silence, focus. And otherwise people want to talk to you. So I wear the head phones with no music, just leave me alone.”
What are you thinking about at that time?: “Nothing. It’s just game day. It’s the calm before the storm. I just want to be focused and relaxed. Now I’m not going down and covering a kick, either. Those guys are getting up and I’m trying to stay in control.”
When do you start getting into that mode?: “My wife and kids usually get out of the house on Saturday because they know I’m a little cranky or whatever. But, yeah, Sunday. It’s not too bad, but locker rooms can be a funny place on Sunday.”
What do you do on Saturdays?: Saturdays are a big study day for me. A lot of memorization. Similar to cramming for a final. Not that fun.”