Colts backup quarterback Matt Hasselbeck made his eighth start of the season on Sunday against the Dolphins in relief of Andrew Luck, and he has been incredibly beat up in doing so.
Hasselbeck has been dealing with rib, shoulder, back, and jaw injuries this year in addition to the normal wear and tear of an NFL season on a 40-year old player, and he has missed time in each of the past four games with injuries. In today's game, Hasselbeck was injured in the second quarter on a hit and play was stopped as Hasselbeck was called out of the huddle to the sidelines, where the trainers were waiting to greet him. He was then taken straight to the locker room and was later announced as out for the remainder of the game. During the second half, he was seen on the sidelines interacting with the other quarterbacks but with his right arm in a sling. Chuck Pagano said after the game that it was a throwing shoulder injury for Hasselbeck but that he will be further evaluated.
Hasselbeck, however, sounds less positive. According to Colts.com's Kevin Bowen, Hasselbeck said after the game that he is not optimistic that he will be able to play next week in the team's regular season finale against the Tennessee Titans. According to FanDuel's Will Carroll, Hasselbeck has a grade I AC sprain, a.k.a. a separated shoulder.
Since it sounds like Hasselbeck will not be available for next week's game, focus will shift even more to whether Andrew Luck will be ready to play. It is currently unknown whether the team's franchise quarterback will be ready to return from his lacerated kidney and torn abdominal muscle for the regular season finale, and the question would become much more uncertain if the Bengals were to win on Monday night, eliminating the Colts from playoff contention. Complicating matters even more, third string quarterback Charlie Whitehurst suffered a hamstring injury in the fourth quarter of the team's win over the Dolphins and will also be further evaluated. The only other quarterback on the roster is Stephen Morris, who was just signed by the Colts off of the Eagles' practice squad earlier this week so that Indy could look at him for future consideration.
So, in other words, we still have no idea who will start at quarterback for the Colts next week against the Titans, but it sounds like it won't be Hasselbeck. He has toughed it out through so many injuries this year that you can't really blame him whatsoever if he's not able to go next week. He's one of the main reasons why the Colts are still even in playoff contention but has been incredibly banged up along the way. If the 40-year old decides to hang it up after the season, we may have seen the last of him.