He is 37 years old, not especially mobile and really playing primarily because the Tennessee Titans No. 1 draft choice is hurt. He isnt even listed as the starter on the Titans depth chart after starting the last four games and will on Sunday vs. the Bears.
But Matt Hasselbeck is arguably precisely the kind of quarterback the Bears do not like playing. Brett Favre, Michael Vick, Cam Newton, the mobile guys no problem.
A wily veteran, however, one that is patient and with a long career history in the patient West Coast scheme that is a problem.
The Bears prefer quarterbacks and offenses getting impatient.
Hes very methodical, knows what hes doing, said defensive end Israel Idonije. Hes not the most mobile guy but the last time we played him, the ball was out. Hes a good quarterback.
Hasselbeck has faced the Bears and lost twice in divisional-round playoffs. But he has won three of the four times he has faced the Bears in the regular season.
More to the immediate situation, he has only lost to them in Chicago.
Hasselbeck has a higher passer rating (83.3) than Jay Cutler (78.9). Away from Soldier Field, Hasselbeck has had games of 90.8 and 106.0. In his last four Bears games, he has thrown a total of one interception vs. seven TD passes.
Hasselbeck has seen Bears defensive players like Lance Briggs, Brian Urlacher and Charles Tillman while a backup to Favre in Green Bay and as a starter for the Seattle Seahawks.
I think I learned a good amount about that defense when I was in Green Bay, being that Tampa was running a similar defense, and Tampa was the best defense in the division when I was in Green Bay, Hasselbeck said. So we studied it, we learned it, and we talked about it.
Then when I went to Seattle, St. Louis was a really, really good team, and people talked about their offense, but their defense was very good, with people like Grant Wistrom and Leonard Little and Aeneas Williams. And I believe Lovie was there.
Then in Chicago, since Ive played them, they got All-Pro players, guys who are perennial Pro Bowlers, guys who are great at their position. And its a defense that you not only know because you watch them on TV as a fan but you also study them and you raise your game in preparation, in a sense, just to try and be successful.