Back likely to keep QB Hasselbeck out of Holmgren's last game

RENTON, Wash. -- The player who benefited most from Mike Holmgren's 10 years in Seattle likely won't play in the final game Holmgren coaches for the Seahawks.

Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, who went to a Super Bowl and became a three-time Pro Bowl passer after Holmgren traded with Green Bay to get him for the 2001 season, is unlikely to play on Sunday when Seattle faces Arizona. The bulging disk in his back is still weakening him.

"I don't think it's realistic. But again, let's see," Holmgren said. "Please don't write, 'He's not going to start,' because I suppose there's a chance, but give me a couple days."

Hasselbeck has missed eight games this season, the most he's been sidelined for since becoming Holmgren's starter during the Seahawks' 2002 season. The back also has affected nerves down his legs.

In October, a specialist in Los Angeles told the 33-year-old that rest for the remainder of the season was the best idea. Hasselbeck said this month doctors have told him if nothing else happens to his back, he should be fine by Valentine's Day and will not need surgery.

Seneca Wallace is set to make his eighth start of the season against the Cardinals, who have already clinched the NFC West that Seattle (4-11) had ruled for the last four seasons.

Wallace had started four games in five years as Hasselbeck's backup before this season.

"I think it will be Seneca in the game," Holmgren said.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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