Giants add veteran depth at QB

After Doug Flutie turned down the Giants' offer to become their backup QB, they were thrilled to land another New Englander to join the battle for the backup slot. New York was awarded Boston College product Tim Hasselbeck off waivers from Washington on May 9.

Hasselbeck, 6-1, 211, is a four-year veteran who spent the previous two seasons with the Redskins. He was their third quarterback throughout the 2004 season, when he did not see any action. Hasselbeck has played in nine NFL games, with five starts. Six of those games and all five starts occurred in 2003, when he completed 93-of-177 passes (53.7 percent) for 1,012 yards, five touchdowns and seven interceptions.

One of those starts was against the Giants in Giants Stadium on Dec. 7, 2003, when he completed 13-of-19 passes for 154 yards and two touchdowns in a 20-7 Washington victory.

After the 2004 season, Hasselbeck was a restricted free agent who was re-signed by the Redskins on April 19. But after Washington drafted Jason Campbell in the first round of last month's draft, Hasselbeck was waived.

"The reason I was released by Washington is we drafted a guy in the first round this year, Patrick Ramsey is a first round pick, and we added Mark (Brunell) last year," Hasselbeck said. "It was a crowded spot, so I asked for my release. This situation is better than that. I just want to come in and work hard and learn as much as I can before the mini-camp, and we'll see what happens."

Hasselbeck joins a Giants quarterbacks corps that includes starter Eli Manning, veteran Jim Miller – whose availability is uncertain because of recent hip surgery – holdover Jesse Palmer and first-year pro Jared Lorenzen.

"We got very fortunate that this young quarterback became available just when we need one," general manager Ernie Accorsi said. "We're fortunate especially since we had to wait out the waivers. We are pleased to have him."

"Tim is extremely athletic and plays with great enthusiasm," said Tom Coughlin, former Boston College head coach. "He is a team guy all the way. He is a vibrant, enthusiastic young man, and he has taken advantage of his opportunities when he has been called upon."

Hasselbeck's older brother, Matt, also a Boston College product, is the starting quarterback of the Seattle Seahawks. His father, Don, was a tight end in the NFL for nine seasons, including 1985 with the Giants. Don Hasselbeck also played for New England, Minnesota and Oakland.

"I never had the opportunity to play for Coach Coughlin, but he recruited my brother and my brother played for him for a year," Hasselbeck said. "Obviously, Mark Brunell played for Coach Coughlin (for eight seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars), and both of them had nothing but great things to say about their experiences.

"I'm familiar with the Giants and the organization. My father played there, so I am excited about that. I have been in the division for a while with Philadelphia and Washington, so I am familiar with the competition in the NFC East."

Hasselbeck joined the Redskins on Oct. 23, 2003. Exactly one month later, he took over for an injured Patrick Ramsey and completed 15-of-30 passes for 150 yards and his first career touchdown – a 37-yarder to Laveranues Coles – in a victory at Miami. Hasselbeck started for the first time the following week and completed 22-of-42 passes for 231 yards – all career highs - in a loss at New Orleans. He was 1-4 as a starter.

Hasselbeck was originally signed as an undrafted rookie by the Buffalo Bills on April 24, 2001. He was released by the Bills that summer and spent time with Baltimore, Philadelphia, Carolina and the Eagles again. In 2002, he played for Berlin in NFL Europe and helped lead the team to World Bowl X. He saw his first NFL action in 2002, when he appeared in two games for Philadelphia. The Eagles released him at the end of training camp in 2003, and Hasselbeck was out of football for two months until the Redskins signed him.

At Boston College, Hasselbeck finished his career sixth in school history in passing yards (3,980), fifth in touchdown passes (29), sixth in total offense (4,233) and seventh in both attempts (501) and completions (278).


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