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Matthew Hasselbeck Announces His Retirement, Joins ESPN as NFL Analyst

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Photos via ESPN Images

18-Year NFL veteran will be part of Sunday NFL Countdown and Monday Night Countdown

NFL quarterback Matthew Hasselbeck announced his retirement from pro football today after 18 seasons and is joining ESPN as a NFL analyst. The three-time Pro Bowler who played his final NFL season for the Indianapolis Colts in 2015, will be part of Sunday NFL Countdown and Monday Night Countdown.

“As a kid, playing in the NFL was always my dream and it turned out to be way more fun than I could’ve ever imagined,” said Hasselbeck. “Throughout 18 incredible seasons, I had the chance to forge many relationships with teammates, coaches and staff that I will cherish forever. Those relationships made my playing career all the more memorable. With the support of my family, we’ve made the decision to embark on the next chapter. I’m extremely thankful for the opportunity to have represented the NFL and so many great teams.”

Beginning this fall, Hasselbeck will appear on Sundays from ESPN’s Bristol, Conn., studios, and he will travel to the site of the weekly Monday Night Football game for the Countdown pregame show. Hasselbeck will also make occasional appearances on other ESPN studio shows and platforms, including NFL Live where he will work alongside his younger brother Tim, the former NFL quarterback who has been an ESPN studio analyst since 2008.

Hasselbeck is the second major addition to ESPN’s NFL roster this offseason, joining nine-time Pro Bowler Charles Woodson, who will also be part of both Countdown shows.

“The exceptional opportunity presented to me by ESPN accelerated my decision to retire from playing football,” said Hasselbeck. “I’m excited for the chance to give everything I have to this new endeavor and share the knowledge I have with our viewers.”

“Matthew has been on our radar for many years and we expect him to have an immediate impact as he transitions from the playing field to a marquee analyst role on our signature NFL shows,” added Seth Markman, ESPN’s senior coordinating producer, NFL studio shows. “Matthew experienced it all in his 18 NFL seasons, he has terrific insights on the game and a great sense of humor, and we are particularly excited to pair him with Tim, who already does such excellent work for us.”

Hasselbeck played quarterback for the Green Bay Packers (1998-2000), Seattle Seahawks (2001-10), Tennessee Titans (2011-12) and Indianapolis Colts (2013-15) during a career that spanned nearly two decades. He threw for 36,638 yards, completing 60 percent of his passes with 212 touchdowns.

After starting his career in Green Bay as the back-up to eventual Hall of Famer Brett Favre, Hasselbeck was traded to Seattle in 2001 where he led the Seahawks to six playoff appearances and a Super Bowl during his 10 seasons in the Pacific Northwest. His best year was 2007 when he set career highs in multiple categories, including passing yards (3,966) and touchdowns (28), leading Seattle to the Divisional Playoffs and being elected to his third Pro Bowl.

In addition to leading the Seahawks to Super Bowl XL in 2005, one of Hasselbeck’s finest performances for Seattle was his final game at Qwest Field when he passed for four touchdowns and 272 yards in a playoff upset of the defending NFC champion New Orleans Saints, who were heavily favored. In all, Hasselbeck’s 11 postseason starts at a quarterback rank 16th all-time in NFL history and he still holds many Seahawks franchise records.

After two years with the Titans, Hasselbeck joined the Colts in 2013 as back-up and mentor to first-round pick Andrew Luck. When Luck suffered a series of injuries in 2015, Hasselbeck led the Colts to a 5-3 record. He won his first four starts, joining Warren Moon and Brett Favre as the only quarterbacks to win four consecutive starts after their 40th birthday in the Super Bowl era.

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