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Replacing Jake Locker



The Titans improved to 3-1 yesterday with a blowout win over the Jets, but lost their young Quarterback Jake Locker for at least a month due to a hip injury. Veteran Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick will take over for the Titans going into a brutal three game stretch against the Chiefs, Seahawks, and 49ers. We will find out just what the Titans are made of in these coming weeks.

Image Credit: bleacherreport.com
So where do the 3-1 Tennessee Titans go from here? With everything clicking on all cylinders on Sunday afternoon, their progress was stopped dead in its tracks when their budding Quarterback Jake Locker was severely injured. The injury occurred on an un-penalized late hit that occurred in the 3rd quarter. Muhammad Wilkerson delivered the hit while Locker was awkwardly bent against the body of Quinton Coples. Locker would not return and was taken to a local hospital for further tests.

Here's the hit. You can clearly see Coples lowering his shoulder into Locker late. (Gif credit: Fansided.com)
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3-1 has never felt so bad.

Ryan Fitzpatrick replaced Locker at Quarterback and managed the game admirably. Needless to say, Tennessee lost a huge part of their offense. Locker was playing at an extremely high level. He had seemingly finally put it all together, ready to lead a run to the playoffs. The early diagnosis is that Locker will be forced to miss 4-8 weeks. Now, don’t get me wrong, the Titans could do much worse that Ryan Fitzpatrick, but the offense is going to suffer.

Fitzpatrick does not have the arm to stretch it downfield, as you saw on the pass to Washington late in the game Sunday. Unfortunately, I think this means teams are going to stack the box more against the Titans offense. Fitzpatrick is going to have to be smart with the ball. He’s been known to be a turnover machine during his time in the NFL registering 39 interceptions in the last two years alone.

The defense plain and simple will have to carry this team. Ryan can manage the offense and put a few things together, but I’m really not sold that he can go win Tennessee football games. I’m thinking of it as a Kerry Collins led team in 2008. The problem is that the defense of 2013 isn’t up to the level as the defense of 2008.

It’s hard to sit here and say that this injury derails 2013 as a whole, but it certainly doesn’t help things going into a brutal stretch of games against the Chiefs, Seahawks, and 49ers. We will certainly find out what the Titans are made of in the next three weeks.



10 Comments

Well replacing Locker is going to be tough. And you are right, 3-1 is great but comes at the expense of losing Locker. Who just can't seem to stay healthy despite coming into his own. Fitzpatrick is going to be the starter. Whether we like it or not. But still, hopefully Fitz can pick up the pace. As Titans are facing the red hot 4-0 Chiefs!

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Chad Jensen
Sep 30 2013 08:34 PM

What a bummer. Locker is finally playing like a 1st Round, Franchise QB. But that damn injury bug likes to bite poor Jake. Hopefully Fitz can keep the train on the tracks and not LOSE games. 

Fitz was far from impressive on Sunday. They are going to cater playcalling to his abilities obviously, so hopefully that helps him significantly. We have the talent surrounding him to be a good player. We'll see what happens. Obviously no where near the team we were with Jake. The guy has been outstanding this season. 

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Kenneth Goit
Sep 30 2013 09:02 PM

Fitz was far from impressive on Sunday. They are going to cater playcalling to his abilities obviously, so hopefully that helps him significantly. We have the talent surrounding him to be a good player. We'll see what happens. Obviously no where near the team we were with Jake. The guy has been outstanding this season.

Fitz showed promise in Buffalo. I think he will be fine with a week's worth of reps with the starters. I also think the whole team will step up for Jake. The team seems behind 100% and like a group for him. They will try to "Win it for Jake"
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Stoney Keeley
Sep 30 2013 10:34 PM

Per Chris Mortensen, Titans are working out David Carr and John Skelton...giving thought to Matt Leinart. 

 

Don't think it's a lack of faith in Ryan Fitzpatrick, just more of emergency depth. Doesn't look like they expect Locker to be back any time soon. 

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Terry Lambert
Sep 30 2013 11:47 PM

I think they are just doing their homework.  I fully expect Rusty Smith to get the call up.  He's worked in the system for as long as Locker has.

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Terry Lambert
Oct 01 2013 12:16 AM

Fitz showed promise in Buffalo. I think he will be fine with a week's worth of reps with the starters. I also think the whole team will step up for Jake. The team seems behind 100% and like a group for him. They will try to "Win it for Jake"

Fitz just has to limit his TOs. 39 picks over his last 32 game is a bit scary to me. Doesn't need to do anything more that "manage" the game. Hopefully the run game can get a little more consistent for him as well.

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Kenneth Goit
Oct 01 2013 12:18 AM

Fitz just has to limit his TOs. 39 picks over his last 32 game is a bit scary to me. Doesn't need to do anything more that "manage" the game. Hopefully the run game can get a little more consistent for him as well.

According to his interview, he now is in win-the-games mode instead of the "don't screw up mode" he was in last night. Could mean more TOs but also big plays.
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Evan Massey
Oct 01 2013 03:26 AM

I really hope that the Titans don't go out and sign either Matt Leinart or David Carr. Carr would be the better of those two options without question, but Skelton or Vince Young would be my choice if I were them. The other possibility would be to throw a late-round draft pick to the Buccaneers to trade for Josh Freeman. Not sure what this hasn't been brought up yet. Freeman may have had a bit of an issue with the Bucs, but who wouldn't? That team is where QB's go to die as long as Schiano is running things. Just make a move for the talented QB, and give him a second chance. Maybe a change of scenery will be what he needs. He's certainly talented and extremely athletic.

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Kenneth Goit
Oct 01 2013 04:15 AM

I really hope that the Titans don't go out and sign either Matt Leinart or David Carr. Carr would be the better of those two options without question, but Skelton or Vince Young would be my choice if I were them. The other possibility would be to throw a late-round draft pick to the Buccaneers to trade for Josh Freeman. Not sure what this hasn't been brought up yet. Freeman may have had a bit of an issue with the Bucs, but who wouldn't? That team is where QB's go to die as long as Schiano is running things. Just make a move for the talented QB, and give him a second chance. Maybe a change of scenery will be what he needs. He's certainly talented and extremely athletic.

Freeman and Young would be the worst choices. They would case starting controversy. The team is just looking for a #3. Freeman isn't a #3, and Vince Young is an immature moron that too many Titans fans would try to get to start.

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