Matt Hasselbeck ‘not super optimistic’ about playing against Titans

Matt Hasselbeck has started eight games for the Colts this season, but isn't optimistic about being able to start a ninth if necessary next week.

Steve Mitchell/Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, who left Sunday’s 18-12 win over the Miami Dolphins with a shoulder injury, said after the game he’s uncertain he’ll to be able play in the Colts’ Week 17 matchup against the Tennessee Titans.

Hasselbeck exited Sunday’s game in the second quarter after a hit by Miami rookie defensive tackle Jordan Phillips and was replaced by backup Charlie Whitehurst.

Week 16 marked the fourth straight game Hasselbeck left due to injury. The 40-year-old, who has been dealing with rib, neck and jaw injuries was healthy enough to start the last three weeks despite being forced out of the game the week before. This time, however, Hasselbeck said he isn’t so sure he’ll be able to play in the regular season finale.

Via CBS 4 Indy’s Mike Chappell:

“I’m not ruling anything out, but I’m not super optimistic about a seven-day return right now,’’ Hasselbeck said.

If Hasselbeck can’t go, it creates a significant issue at quarterback for Indianapolis. The 17-year-veteran has started the Colts’ last six games in place of the injured Andrew Luck, who is recovering from a lacerated kidney and partially torn abdominal muscle. Luck has returned to practice, but hasn’t been cleared to play yet.

Further complicating matters is the fact that Whitehurst, who completed 9-of-14 passes for 78 yards in relief of Hasselbeck, suffered a hamstring injury in the fourth quarter.

If neither Luck, Hasselbeck nor Whitehurst are able to play against the Titans, head coach Chuck Pagano may be forced to turn to Stephen Morris at quarterback. 

Morris was signed off the Philadelphia Eagles’ practice squad last week.

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