Indianapolis Colts quarterback Matt Hasselbeck is 40 years old. It’s a terrific age if you’ve just been named a partner at a big law firm. Not too old to become a managing director on Wall Street. But it’s not a typical age for an NFL quarterback to step in with a playoff contender and go 4-0, as Hasselbeck has done for the Colts after a 25-12 win over the Buccaneers this week.
No team had more preseason hype than the Colts — and most of it centered on the greatly gifted QB Andrew Luck. But Luck wasn’t great to start the season and then he suffered a kidney injury that thrust Hasselbeck into the driver’s seat. A Boston College alum, Hasselbeck was the 187th pick in the NFL draft 17 years ago. But he’s no stranger to success: Hasselbeck took the Seahawks to the Super Bowl in 2005, while achieving the highest passer rating in the NFC that year. Arriving in Indianapolis in 2013, Hasselbeck couldn’t have expected to be leading the team two years later. (Luck remains the franchise player.) But Hasselbeck is great testimony to the value of preparation. He has been more than ready when called upon.