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Contract extension for Hasselbeck

Feb. 5, 2003 at 12:27 PM   |   Comments

SEATTLE, Feb. 5 (UPI) -- Veteran Seattle quarterback Matt Hasselbeck has gotten two more years with the team.

Late Tuesday, the Seahawks decided to exercise their two-year option on Hasselbeck, who stands to make $10.5 million in the deal.

Hasselbeck, 27, became the Seahawks' starting signal-caller late in the 2002 season when Trent Dilfer suffered a torn Achilles tendon in the game Oct. 27 at Dallas. Until that time, he was the No. 1 backup, having lost the starter's job because of his inconsistency in the preseason.

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported Wednesday that the club option was included in the five-year deal Hasselbeck signed before the start of the 2001 season, and erases the final three years of the original contract. The option payout was tied to where he ranked among NFL leaders in passer rating, completion percentage, or touchdown passes in 2002.

By finishing fifth in completion percentage (.637), the club's options were for a one-year, $4.5 million deal; the two-year, $10.5 contract; or a three-year, $18.5 million package that would have included a $5 million signing bonus.

"I'm excited for the opportunity to grow and improve with this young team," said Hasselbeck, who joined the Seahawks via trade in 2001.

The four-year veteran started just 10 games in 2002, but enjoyed one of the most efficient seasons in team history. Over the final six games, Hasselbeck posted a 92.4 passer rating averaging an NFL-best 343.7 passing yards over that span.

He set single-season franchise records by passing for at least 300 yards in a game four times, 400 yards twice, and broke single-game marks for passes attempted (55); completed (36); and passing yards in a game (449 at San Diego, 12/29).

For the season, he completed 267-of-419 passes for 3,075 yards, with 15 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He led the NFC with a 63.7 completion percentage, and was second with an 87.8 passer rating.

© 2003 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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