The Colts are moving on from perhaps their most inspirational player of 2015.
The team has informed quarterback Matt Hasselbeck that he is not in their plans for next year, NFL Media columnist Michael Silver reported Sunday, per a source familiar with the Colts' plans. Hasselbeck has not decided whether or not he wants to play for another team.
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Typically, we would all scoff at the market for a 40-year-old backup, but as many around the league will attest, good help is hard to find. Hasselbeck played through some intense injuries in 2015 and gutted the Colts to an 8-8 record while Andrew Luck was sidelined with a lacerated kidney. Hasselbeck threw for 1,690 yards in 2015 with nine touchdowns and five picks. He was arguably one of the best backups in football over the past few years in terms of both actual playing ability and leadership. For years, Luck praised Hasselbeck's ability as a mentor.
The most surprising part of the news, whoever, might be the Colts' confidence moving forward in Josh Freeman. The former first-round pick was playing for the Brooklyn Bolts of the FXFL last season but managed to work his way back into football toward the end of last season. After he was traded from the Buccaneers to the Vikings in 2013, Freeman had camp stops with the Giants and Dolphins, though neither panned out.
Freeman's fall from grace might not have been all his own doing. This is why so many teams have been curious about the 28-year-old, who once threw for more than 4,000 yards and 25 touchdown passes in one season.
The Colts hope to never find out, but after last season they understand the need for consistent and durable help in case of an emergency.