NFL roster cuts: AFC | NFC

Matt Hasselbeck in NFC South?

March, 18, 2013
3/18/13
5:42
PM ET
The Tennessee Titans released Matt Hasselbeck on Monday and the quarterback’s name has already been tied to two NFC South teams.

ESPN’s Chris Mortensen mentioned New Orleans and Tampa Bay as two organizations that are showing interest. Mortensen also listed Arizona, Buffalo, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Indianapolis and the New York Giants.

Hasselbeck is a guy that’s been in the league since 1999 and he’s been both a starter and a backup.

The Saints are looking for a backup for Drew Brees after Chase Daniel left for Kansas City. Hasselbeck would be an ideal backup because he’s a student of the game and could quickly pick up Sean Payton’s complicated offense.

But there might be at least a chance for something bigger in Tampa Bay. Josh Freeman is the Buccaneers’ starter and everyone involved with the team desperately wants him to succeed. But Freeman struggled with consistency during a five-game losing streak at the end of last season. He also is headed into a contract year. The Bucs are going to give Freeman every chance to succeed and Hasselbeck could be a nice mentor.

But what if Freeman starts off badly and the Bucs decide he’s not their guy for the long term? They could hand things off to Hasselbeck, who can still be a competent starter, at least for the short term.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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