Matt Hasselbeck’s abrupt exit from Seahawks

Published on August 4, 2011 by     

Things changed.

The sentence is as simple as it is true about the Seattle Seahawks. It applies to the additions the team has made, but even moreso the subtractions.

It was only 10 days ago that teams were allowed to begin talking to free agents, and when that period began at 7 a.m. on Tuesday, July 26, Matt saw Seattle as one of his considerations.

Within five hours, that had changed, and Seahawks coach Pete Carroll and general manager Schneider called to say Seattle was going in a different direction, namely Tarvaris Jackson.

The fact Hasselbeck would not be back with the Seahawks was not as surprising as the fact that the final decision wasn’t his. It was easy to see how Hasselbeck would end up choosing another, more stable opportunity. It was harder for me to imagine that Seattle would decide it was better off with Jackson than waiting to see if Hasselbeck would come back.

When free agency began, I was fairly certain Seattle would not increase its contract offer to Hasselbeck. I did not foresee that contract offer, being pulled. In fact, I openly wondered about reports that Seattle had changed its situation.

It was wr, wrrrrrrrrr, wrrrrrooooooooo. I was mistaken. ESPN’s John Clayton couldn’t have been more correct about the direction Seattle was headed once the lockout ended, turning to Jackson ahead of Hasselbeck.

Just ask Schneider if Hasselbeck was still an option once the lights went back on after the lockout was lifted.

“We had done enough negotiating with Matt that we had our answer going in,” Schneider said. “Then it just kind of became more and more clear as the longer the lockout went. I don’t know how else to describe it.”

At some point during the lockout, the Seahawks reached a point of no return of sorts with Hasselbeck. They decided that Jackson and his familiarity with the offense Darrell Bevell would be installing made him more desirable than Hasselbeck.

“Tarvaris brings so much continuity to us that I think it’s the best thing for our club,” Carroll said. “I’m excited to tell you that.”

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