INDIANAPOLIS—The last time the Seattle Seahawks made a Super Bowl appearance, Matt Hasselbeck was their signal caller.
Hasselbeck, who played 10 seasons (2001-2010) in Seattle, turned in a career-year during the 2005 season as the Seahawks won the NFC for the first time in franchise history.
The path Hasselbeck and the Seahawks took to getting to Super Bowl XL wasn't particularly easy.
Seattle had made just one playoff appearance in the 12 years prior to Hasselbeck's arrival.
"There's certainly a lot of pride that I have from my time there and just really turning that around," Hasselbeck said on SVP & Russillo last week. "I got traded there in 2001 and we weren't a very good football team. We struggled and it was hard.
"We had guys that stepped up as leaders and accepted the risk of being a leader when it wasn't comfortable or easy to do and really put a lot of, and it sounds like a cliché, blood, sweat and tears, broken bones, all on the line to just turn that around."
The 2005 season for Hasselbeck came on the heels of back-to-back trips to the playoffs. On both of those occasions though, the Seahawks lost in the Wild Card round.
Matt Hasselbeck's 2005 December Stats
135.5 (4 games)
Thanks to a 13-3 regular season in 2005, the Seahawks secured a bye and home field throughout the playoffs.
Hasselbeck entered that postseason coming off the best stretch of his 15-year NFL career.
He recorded a 135.5 passer rating during an undefeated month of December, which stands as the fourth best rating during any month in NFL history.
The Seahawks won 11 of their last 12 games in 2005, as Hasselbeck didn't throw an interception in the team's final seven road contests.
A pair of double-digit home wins punched Seattle's ticket to a Super Bowl XL matchup in Detroit against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Pittsburgh, who was favored, jumped out to a 14-3 lead early in the third quarter.
Hasselbeck and the Seahawks would claw back. The then 30-year old quarterback threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to tight end Jerramy Stevens to cut the Steelers lead to 14-10 with 6:51 to go in the third quarter.
Seattle would go on to have multiple possessions with a chance to take the lead but each time came up empty-handed.
As Hasselbeck looks back on that 2005 season, he remembers the feeling he felt as the confetti dropped down on the Seahawks after their 34-14 NFC Championship win over the Panthers.
"It was just an amazing, amazing, feeling," Hasselbeck told ESPN Radio. "The championship game, because it's in front of your home crowd is almost better of a feeling then the neutral site of a Super Bowl, even though you would much rather win a Super Bowl then lose it.
"That feeling is just a really incredible feeling, a great moment."