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Matt Hasselbeck not worked up over Titans' QB derby

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John Lennon once told us, "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans."

Matt Hasselbeck knows exactly what the legendary Beatle was getting at with that statement. Hasselbeck went into the offseason thinking training camp would be a battle against up-and-comer Jake Locker for the Tennessee Titans' starting quarterback job.

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Instead, Titans owner Bud Adams fell for Peyton Manning, pushing hard to land the state's prodigal son. Adams didn't get his man, but Hasselbeck was reminded not to look at competition in this league as a one-on-one battle.

"The advice I give to guys over the years is you are not really competing with guys at your position," Hasselbeck recently told The Tennessean. "At this level, you are competing with everyone in the world that they can find to replace you, whether they are here yet or not. I almost learned that lesson the hard way this year, this offseason. That is just reality. Really nothing is changing in my mind and my preparation in the way I approach things.

"Am I competing? Sure, absolutely. I am competing for my job. But that's every year, all the time. But that won't change relationships on the field or how I try and help another guy next to me or anything like that."

Hasselbeck produced about as expected in his first season with the Titans, guiding the team to a 9-7 record. He has two years remaining on the three-year, $20 million deal he signed in 2011, but Locker is a very real threat to wrest away the job.

Locker, the eighth overall pick in the 2011 draft, has split first-team reps with Hasselbeck this offseason, and Titans coach Mike Munchak is presiding over one of the league's most wide-open quarterback battles.

"You know what? I feel so good about both of them that I'm not necessarily leaning either way on it," Munchak said, referring to his starter. "Either way for me, I'm going to have a very good quarterback playing."

All things being equal, it would make sense for Locker to win the job. He's the future of the franchise, and 36-year-old Hasselbeck might have to significantly outplay him to keep his job.

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