Seahawks QB Hasselbeck hoping to rebound vs. Bucs

It's not every week that Matt Hasselbeck is pulled aside by coach Pete Carroll and talked to about his performance from one day earlier.

Carroll made a point of doing it Monday, one day after yanking Hasselbeck from the Seattle Seahawks' 34-18 loss to the Falcons after the quarterback committed three third-quarter turnovers that led to 17 Atlanta points.

"We just kind of went over the game in more detail, talked through everything, and I think more than anything, he wants to be more involved in terms of communicating better throughout the week and stuff like that," Hasselbeck said Thursday. "I think he does a great job of getting messages across and communicating and coaching and just helping his players be successful. I think that was probably the biggest thing."

Later that day, Carroll said Hasselbeck would continue as the Seahawks' starter, even after backup Charlie Whitehurst entered and performed well in the closing minutes of Seattle's latest loss, its sixth in the last eight games.

Yet for all the turnovers Hasselbeck has been responsible for in the past four weeks, Carroll believes the veteran quarterback remains the best option to try to slide the Seahawks into the playoffs in the coach's first year back in the NFL.

All Seattle needs are wins over Tampa Bay and St. Louis to win the NFC West title.

"It has to do with we think that Matt can get the job done for us," Carroll said. "We have to keep him in good situations and we have to play good football around him."

The best situation to keep Hasselbeck out of is playing from behind. Hasselbeck had 13 turnovers in the previous four games -- 10 interceptions and three fumbles -- and most of those came when Seattle trailed. That led to Hasselbeck trying to force plays, especially in the past two weeks, that turned exceedingly bad for the Seahawks.

None was bigger than Seattle's first offensive play of the second half last Sunday against Atlanta. Hasselbeck rolled out of the pocket in his own end zone and, instead of throwing the ball away when he was first pressured by Jamaal Anderson, he tried to fight off the big defensive end in the hopes of hitting Ben Obomanu downfield for a big play.

But Hasselbeck never got free. Anderson forced a fumble that was recovered by Atlanta's Jonathan Babineaux, and suddenly, Seattle was down 24-10. Hasselbeck then compounded the mistake by throwing interceptions on the next two possessions.

"I think I've got to get less frustrated during the games, bottom line. Because when you get frustrated you try to do too much," Hasselbeck said.

Part of the message this week from Carroll and offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates is for Hasselbeck to be willing to throw a checkdown and not always feel the need to be overly aggressive going down field with his throws. It's a difficult message to absorb, but one that has been repeatedly emphasized.

"We've just got to keep talking about it and showing it on film," Bates said. "I'm not so sure he's forcing everything. I think a quarterback believes he is making the throw at that moment, and then you've got to go back on Monday and watch the tape and see what happened. But you've got to believe in your stroke."

Another aspect for Hasselbeck is his future in Seattle. His contract is up after the season, and he's one of a large number of Seahawks with an unsteady situation for 2011.

Hasselbeck realizes that winning these last two games and getting into the playoffs could change some opinions entering the offseason.

"If you don't perform, if you don't produce, if we don't win, they'll go out and get somebody new and who they think can do the job," Hasselbeck said. "I don't think the 30 of us that are in that group I don't know if we're that much different than the rest of the team. It's just how it is and how you have to approach it."

In injury news, the Seahawks placed Junior Siavii on season-ending injured reserve after he suffered a neck stinger against the Falcons.

Siavii was hurt during the fourth quarter after a hard collision with Atlanta running back Michael Turner.

"He's not well right now," Carroll said Wednesday. "This is a really sensitive issue here. We've got to make sure we take great care of him. He's not well right now. He's still coming back. So he won't do anything at all this week."

Seattle made the move Thursday and signed linebacker Joe Pawelek from the practice squad.

Siavii had become a vital part of the Seahawks' defensive line, playing both tackle and end. He had played in 14 games with six starts and posted a career-best 30 tackles.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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