Indianapolis Colts Football

YOUNG COLTS QUARTERBACKS ALREADY LEARNING FROM MATT HASSELBECK

Posted by Kevin Bowen on June 3, 2013 – 7:30 am

Excuse Chandler Harnish and Andrew Luck for staring.

This offseason the two Colts quarterbacks have been introduced to a third member in their quarterback room and he isn’t your typical backup.

Matt Hasselbeck’s resume is littered with Pro Bowl appearances, a Super Bowl berth and 15 years of NFL experience.

“You can see Chandler (Harnish) and Andrew (Luck) look at him and go ‘Whoa, this guy comes out slinging it’ and just has run the concept so many times the ball comes out quick,” Colts quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen said. “He knows what’s going on, the way he studies and then just has a professional air about him that’s different from your average football player.”

“There’s a guy that after that many years, you’d dread these (OTA) practices. He might be the most excited, comes in excited every day and has some fun and keeps the place loose. He’s been terrific.”

Hasselbeck is still in the early stages of his time with the Colts but the impact he has had with a pair of second-year quarterbacks is evident.

“He’s first class all the way,” Harnish said of Hasselbeck. “He’s fun, he’s down to earth, he’s energetic.”

“I was telling (Christensen), for a 37-year old, (Hasselbeck) throws the ball extremely well, he’s good in conditioning. I’m hoping that I’m half as good as he is at that age. It’s easy to respect a guy like that and follow him because he’s a Super Bowl quarterback, Pro Bowler, been around for a long time and played with some of the greats.”

On the brink of 200 games played in the NFL, Hasselbeck had a decision to make this offseason.

He could close the book on a career that many quarterbacks dream of, instead, Hasselbeck has decided to take one more challenge, one that doesn’t include a starting script, but the need to mentor a youthful quarterback room in trying to add a Super Bowl ring to an already lengthy resume.

“I think it just speaks to his character of the type of guy he is,” Harnish said of Hasselbeck joining the Colts.

“He’s about making this world a better place and using this platform to affect those guys younger than him, whether it’s a teammate or someone just out in the community.”


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OFFENSIVE ASSISTANT COACHES OFFER PERSPECTIVE ON POSITION GROUPS

Posted by Kevin Bowen on May 28, 2013 – 9:29 am

We are 100 days away from the start of the 2013 NFL season with the Colts wrapping up OTAs over the next two weeks.

Last week the Colts assistant coaches were made available to the media and offered some great perspective into their position group.

Colts.com will take a closer look into these groups over the coming weeks and here is a preview of comments from the various offensive assistant coaches:

Quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen is the longest tenured coach on the Colts staff yet he has the luxury this offseason of something he has never really seen during his 11 seasons in Indianapolis.

Matt Hasselbeck brings 15 seasons of NFL experience to the Colts quarterbacks room and has already made an impression with his fellow signal callers.

“You can see Chandler (Harnish) and Andrew (Luck) look at (Hasselbeck) and go ‘Whoa, this guy comes out slinging it’ and just has run the concept so many times the ball comes out quick. He knows what’s going on, the way he studies and then just has a professional air about him that’s different from your average football player. He’s been great. He’s been terrific. There’s a guy, same thing, that after that many years, you’d dread these practices. He might be the most excited, comes in excited every day and has some fun and keeps the place loose. He’s been terrific.”

Running backs coach David Walker was a victim of injuries across his position group last season with Vick Ballard being the lone constant over the course of the season.

Walker was very high on Ballard when he came out of Mississippi State in 2012 and after an 814-yard rookie campaign, it’s the little things that are the focus this offseason.

“The good lord has given (Ballard) a lot of physical ability. It’s not so much he needs to get bigger, faster, stronger. It’s how he trains his eyes, gets better as a pro. Like anything, to be able to sense things before they happen that’s the key at any position and with experience that’s going to come forward.”

Offensive line coach Joe Gilbert is familiar with most of his group but now he is the one leading the room after spending last season as an assistant offensive line coach.

Curious minds have wondered what type of schemes the Colts offensive line will implement this season and Gilbert cleared that up with a detailed answer.

“I mean we’ve got everything. We’re a gap team. We’ve got gap schemes, we’ve got zone schemes, we’ve got man schemes. I think the one thing we’ve got enough of in our arsenal is we can pick and choose game week going in and seeing how somebody going to defend us. How can we take advantage of them personnel-wise? How can we create mismatches by formations and by schemes. I think that gives us a little bit of flexibility with what we have.”


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ANDREW LUCK AMONG COLTS PLAYERS THAT VISITED INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY

Posted by Kevin Bowen on May 17, 2013 – 7:40 am

Ask virtually any Indiana native and it’s almost a right of initiation for a Hoosier to at least make one visit to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway during the month of May.

Andrew Luck has called Indianapolis home for just over a year and he accomplished that visit on Wednesday afternoon.

Driver Charlie Kimball hosted Luck, Chandler Harnish, Matt Hasselbeck and Griff Whalen as the four players got to tour the No. 83 Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing garage.

“As a sports fan, it’s awesome to see a spectacle like this, a stadium like this,” Luck said in a Wednesday press conference at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. “To see how different athletes operate and how a race car team operates compared to a football team. Hopefully it will be a little educational for us.”

Busy with school last May, Luck made sure to make it out to the speedway this year and his relationship with Kimball extends back to the IU-Riley event the driver attended with the Colts quarterback.

Kimball’s father is a Stanford alumnus and Charlie’s aunt even spoke to Luck’s freshman English literature class in Palo Alto.

Both Luck and Kimball spent part of their childhood growing up in Europe but now it’s all about the Circle City during the month of the May.

“I wanted them to come see my office, because in the Winter, it’s easy to turn on the TV and see these guys go to work on Sundays,” Kimball said.

“I wanted to give them the opportunity see what I think is the greatest sporting venue in the world – the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and see us turn laps at 215, 220 mph and give them the full Indianapolis experience.”


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CHANDLER CHERISHES CHOICE

Posted by craigkelleycolts on April 25, 2013 – 2:42 pm

What’s in a name?  Sometimes nothing at all.

The 253rd choice of the 2012 draft was the final one.  For years, the player taken with the last pick has been dubbed, “Mr. Irrelevant.”

It is a program now that is part of the landscape, part of draft lore.

It will apply to an Indianapolis Colt Saturday night just like it did a year ago when Chandler Harnish was spared the undrafted free agency route into the NFL by being selected by his favorite team.

He felt anything but irrelevant.

“Just getting the call (from the Colts),” said Harnish of what was memorable about last year’s draft.  “It was the worst day of my life going into that seventh round.  When I finally got the call at the end, it turned out to be the best day.”

The Bluffton native and product of Norwell High School threw for 68 touchdowns and almost 9,000 yards at Northern Illinois.

He was the first quarterback to lead NIU to four bowl games, and he was the second quarterback taken by the Colts in the draft.

Being the last pick meant a big difference from not being taken at all.

“I think you look at it emotionally, mentally and financially.  There is some difference,” said Harnish.  “For me, it was mentally, because I would have felt like I let people down if I weren’t drafted.  I know no one ever thought that, but I had the goal set in my mind.

“It didn’t matter what round, I just wanted to get drafted.  To make family and friends proud was kind of the cherry on top.”

Harnish spent the first five games last year on the active roster, then finished the balance of the season on the practice squad.  He is one of three quarterbacks – Andrew Luck and Matt Hasselbeck – now on the roster.

Harnish will welcome the final pick in this year’s draft just as he was made to feel at home with the Colts, his favorite team growing up.

“I’m going to try to be his personal mentor (laughs).  It will be fun,” said Harnish.  “I’m going to tell him to have fun with (being Mr. Irrelevant).  There will be people making jokes.  Just go out and don’t worry about what people are saying.  Try to prove them wrong.

“I think it’s a measure of motivation.  He’ll be a guy I try to connect with right away.  It’s still an incredible honor to get drafted.”


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DAILY CLIPS: APRIL 17TH

Posted by coltsindianapolis on April 17, 2013 – 7:22 am

COLTS NEWS (LOCAL AND NATIONAL)
Indianapolis Colts’ worst draft picks: No. 4, quarterback Jeff George
Sizing up the Colts’ pre-NFL draft roster; defensive line
NFL Draft: See who the Colts may pick in this mock draft
Colts’ Harnish hits half court shot in jersey challenge
Colts’ offseason brings questions, pressure
Colts confident they can sell new luxury suites
Hamilton says Colts have ‘No Coast offense’
Andrew Luck’s cell phone looks almost as old as him
What do Andrew Luck and your grandfather have in common? They both own flip phones
Matt Hasselbeck, Chandler Harnish settle jersey No. 8

COLTS.COM
2013 NFL draft preview: defensive ends
Colts top draft pick: offensive lineman
Reunited feels so good
One for eight

AFC SOUTH BLOG
AFC South salary –cap report
GMs keep an eye on mock drafts

NFL NEWS
Texans likely to buck trend of using top pick on defender
Titans’ Gray on plusses of three veteran safeties
Jaguars coach Gus Bradley excited to be on the field
Pat Summerall, Star kicker with Giants and Calm voice on TV, dies at 82
NFL to reveal schedule Thursday
Ultimate Mock Draft IX: Awkward moment awaits former Packers QB Brett Favre
Robert Kraft donating up to $100,000 to Boston Marathon victims

AFC TEAM NEWS
Patriots pledge donations
Source: NY Jets agree to one year deal with outside LB Calvin Pace
Tom Telesco navigates a ‘unique’ draft

NFC TEAM NEWS
NY Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul says Tom Coughlin comments on his weight ‘never bothered’ him
Carimi sets sights on guard spot


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TV FUTURE ON HOLD FOR HASSELBECK

Posted by Kevin Bowen on April 15, 2013 – 12:16 pm

Matt Hasselbeck doesn’t have to look far to see what might be in store for his future after football.

His brother, Tim (a former NFL quarterback), has been a TV analyst since 2007 and is currently on ESPN.

Elizabeth Hasselbeck, Tim’s wife, has been a co-host on The View since 2003.

Any immediate TV studio jobs will have to wait for Matt as he told ESPN’s Colin Cowherd last week that he wants to play football for two more years.

Matt, who will turn 38 in September, knows that while retirement is on the horizon, the focus is solely on his football career and capturing that elusive Super Bowl.

“It’s been my experience when I play with guys and they get later in their career, they start thinking about what they are going to do after football,” Hasselbeck said on “The Herd.” “They start getting into other business or they start thinking about school or a second career. It takes away from their play.”

“If you don’t bring it with everything you’ve got in the offseason, and even during the season, it’s not going to be good enough.”

For the last two seasons, Matt has got a first-hand look at his new team.

In 2012, Matt started at quarterback for the Tennessee Titans during their 19-13 overtime defeat to the Colts.

Matt’s memory though turns to the team’s second meeting where he found out just how special things were coming together in Indianapolis.

“I remember playing up there in Indy, there was a break in the game and everyone, including (the Titans), gave a standing ovation to Chuck Pagano. There was a moment when they honored their cheerleaders who decided to shave their heads in support of Coach Pagano.”

“I think there is just a great respect for the kind of year that they had and how they rallied around their leader in a sense,” Hasselbeck said.

The 15-year veteran will bring 11 games worth of postseason experience with him to Indianapolis and knows that helping a young signal caller is near the top of the priority list.

“I’m just looking forward to being around (Luck),” Hasselbeck said. “When you are with some of the best athletes in the world, it helps improve your game. I’m pretty excited about that opportunity as well.”


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DAILY CLIPS: APRIL 9TH

Posted by coltsindianapolis on April 9, 2013 – 9:54 am

COLTS NEWS (LOCAL AND NATIONAL)
NFL Draft: What can the Colts get with the 24th pick?
Indianapolis Colts’ worst draft picks: No. 8, defensive tackle Quinn Pitcock
A player-by-player breakdown of the Colts’ 2013 salary cap
Indianapolis Colts, city reach deal on new luxury suites
Hasselbeck wants to help Andrew Luck by pushing him
Matt Hasselbeck aims to ‘End It’

COLTS.COM
2013 NFL Draft Preview: Guards
Heyward-Bey already listening to Wayne

AFC SOUTH BLOG
Titans, Colts, Texans want QBs to go early
Video: Considering Jordan and Jaguars

NFL NEWS
Offensive criticism goes beyond Matt Schaub
Future of bill seeking $60 million for EverBank Field improvements not solid
NFL asked to explain teams’ combine questions
Bills sign Kevin Kolb
Court hearing on NFL concussions set Tuesday in PA
Here’s hoping brilliant NFL idea to overhaul Pro Bowl happens
Packers president Mark Murphy defends quiet offseason

AFC TEAM NEWS
Pats may have ex-Raider DL Kelly
Tebow to attend Jet workouts
Revis remains on Bucs’ radar
Eric Winston, Chargers talked salary, but tackle is still unsigned

NFC TEAM NEWS
Giants crack door for Jacobs’ return
Dollars and sense: Roster bonuses pay for Williams


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Colts News and More From Around the Web

Posted by coltsindianapolis on March 27, 2013 – 8:58 am

COLTS NEWS (LOCAL AND NATIONAL)
The NFL is looking to spread out its off-season schedule to keep fans talking
Kelly Tilley: Colts cheerleading head talks about staying limber, choosing the best
No news from Colts on WR front
NFL’s Freeman finds his way back to class
Matt Hasselbeck still in shock from Tennessee Titans release

COLTS.COM
2013 Positional series: Running backs
Potential oozing for Oregon’s Dion Jordan
Grigson holds conference call with season ticket holders

NFL NEWS
NFL camp for high schoolers instills character development
Vince Young throws at Texas pro day, hopes for another NFL shot
H.G.H. case could affect NFL talks
Dez Bryant eyes 2,000-yard mark
For Manti Te’o it’s just the beginning
Lewis knew when to quit; other big-name veterans finding out
Dwight Freeney’s demands slow Denver Broncos talks

AFC TEAM NEWS
Vince Wilfork extends his diabetes fight
TE Davis may visit Jets

NFC TEAM NEWS
Sources: David Diehl accepts massive pay cut to remain with NY Giants for one more season
Bears chairman George McCaskey lucky to be where he is – and he knows it


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THE ROLE MIGHT BE DIFFERENT, BUT THE GOAL IS THE SAME FOR HASSELBECK

Posted by Kevin Bowen on March 19, 2013 – 10:05 pm

After 15 seasons and 168 games, what is the motivation for quarterback Matt Hasselbeck to move on to his fourth NFL team?

A Super Bowl ring?

“I’d say that’s pretty high on the list,” Hasselbeck said of his desire to continue playing for the Lombardi Trophy.

“That’s certainly something that’s on my bucket list. I came really close one time and not as close a couple other times, but it’s something that I want to accomplish while I still have the opportunity.”

The news of Hasselbeck’s release came during a family vacation for the 15-year NFL veteran and he admitted that it came as a surprise.

Hasselbeck realizes that he’s now walking into a building where the starting quarterback position is established but after talking it over with his family and agent, it was the Colts that continued to stick out.

“Obviously the reputation that the Colts organization has and the kind of player that Andrew Luck is, more and more it made sense,” Hasselbeck said of his decision on Tuesday afternoon.

“I would also say that the Colts interest from that moment that I got the phone call to (Tuesday) morning when I signed the contract, their interest just felt the most consistent and it just felt right. There’s 100 reasons why it’s a good idea and I could probably go through them all. But I can just say that I think it’s an obvious fit for a lot of different reasons and I’m really looking forward to it.”

Colts Head Coach Chuck Pagano spearheaded Indianapolis’ effort in acquiring the three-time Pro Bowl quarterback.

Hasselbeck said he doesn’t personally know Luck and relied on Pagano’s insight into fellow players and coaches to inform the former Titans quarterback of the culture in Indianapolis.

One area where both quarterback and coach already see eye-to-eye on is their vision of the Colts making a deep playoff run.

In 2005, Hasselbeck led Seattle to Super Bowl XL but a fourth quarter comeback bid fell short after an interception in Pittsburgh Steelers territory halted the Seahawks attempt at the elusive championship.

At the age of 37, this might be Hasselbeck’s final stop on a storied career with one chapter still to be written.

His role isn’t that of the lead character but after 15 years of playing with a multitude of signal callers, it’s time for Hasselbeck to instill a young quarterback with some of the knowledge that made him such a commodity the past few days.

I’m just really thankful for all the different (quarterbacks) that poured in me and shared with me (their insights), some of the good, some of the bad,” Hasselbeck said.

“I can say what’s probably been the most enjoyable, whatever that makeup is with the (quarterbacks) coach and the three (quarterbacks), or however many guys, when that group is really strong and sort of in a fun way competitive with each other and also just like tight, it makes the whole season fun. I think it really can permeate through the team in a positive way.”


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Colts Sign Matt Hasselbeck

Posted by coltsindianapolis on – 10:08 am

The Indianapolis Colts today signed free agent quarterback Matt Hasselbeck.

“We are very pleased to announce the signing of Matt Hasselbeck,” said General Manager Ryan Grigson. “His body of work, intangibles, and extensive league experience speak for themselves. Those factors, plus his familiarity with our offensive scheme, will make him a great asset to our team and its vision as we move forward.”

Hasselbeck, a three-time Pro Bowl selection, has competed in 194 games (152 starts) over his 14-year NFL career. He has completed 3,029-of-5,018 passes for 34,517 yards, 201 touchdowns and 147 interceptions for a passer rating of 82.2. He currently ranks fourth among active quarterbacks in attempts, completions and passing yards and fifth in passing touchdowns. In the postseason, he has started 11 games, completing 237-of-406 passes for 18 touchdowns and nine interceptions for an 84.4 rating. He holds 22 career 300-yard passing performances in the regular season and two in the postseason.

Hasselbeck joins the Colts after spending the last two seasons (2011-2012) with the Tennessee Titans. In 2011, he produced one of the best seasons of his career. His 518 attempts and 3,571 yards made up the fourth-highest single-season totals in team history, while his completions (319) ranked third in club annals. His 18 touchdown passes were the most since 2004 (Billy Volek), and with 28 completions of 25 yards-or-more, Hasselbeck had the highest big-play total since Steve McNair in 2001 (32).

Prior to joining the Titans, Hasselbeck spent 10 seasons (2001-2010) with the Seattle Seahawks where he led the team to six postseason berths and their only Super Bowl appearance in 2005. In his time with the Seahawks, he posted an 82.2 passer rating, completing 2,559-of-4,250 passes for 29,434 yards, 174 touchdowns and 128 interceptions.

In 2010, Hasselbeck started both postseason games to become the Seahawks’ all-time leader in playoff games played and started. He also set a franchise postseason single-game record with four touchdown passes against New Orleans (1/8/11) in an NFC Wild Card victory.

In 2009, Hasselbeck became the Seahawks’ all-time franchise leader in career attempts, completions and passing yards, surpassing Dave Krieg in each category. He also set a single-game record against Detroit (11/8/09), completing 39 passes, including 15 consecutive, tied for second-most in club history.

In 2007, Hasselbeck earned his third Pro Bowl selection after setting career highs for attempts (562), completions (352), passing yards (3,966) and touchdown passes (28). In 2005, he was named the starter for the NFC Pro Bowl squad after posting a career and NFC-best 98.2 passer rating, leading the Seahawks to an appearance in Super Bowl XL.

In 2003, Hasselbeck earned his first trip to the Pro Bowl after guiding the Seahawks to their first-ever undefeated home record. He tied his own record for most 300-yard games in a season (four) and recorded then-career-highs of 3,841 passing yards, 26 passing touchdowns and an 88.8 passer rating.

Hasselbeck was originally selected by the Green Bay Packers in the sixth round (187th overall) of the 1998 NFL Draft and spent three seasons with the Packers before being traded to the Seahawks prior to the start of the 2001 campaign.


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