NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Titans' hazy quarterback situation could gain some clarity by the time the team practices on Wednesday.
Coach Ken Whisenhunt said Jake Locker, who has missed the past two games with a bruised thumb, will throw Tuesday and they will assess how he responds as the team begins its practice week for the Houston Texans on Wednesday.
Whisenhunt stuck with his stance that nothing has changed in his thinking about the Titans' quarterbacks, which means Locker will be starting when healthy.
Charlie Whitehurst has led the Titans to one win and two losses in his starts this season for the injured Locker, who missed another game with a wrist injury.
Meanwhile the buzz in Nashville continues to mount, of course, for sixth-round rookie Zach Mettenberger to play.
“I know he’s growing up from the standpoint of his preparation, how he handles himself in the huddle," Whisenhunt said. "He’s gotten some reps, especially with the starting offense just because of the quarterback situation the last couple weeks.
“You can tell a lot by his interaction in the meetings. You can also tell a lot by how he handles the look team or the scout team huddle on the practice field. I think one of the things I like to watch is if he’s really trying to stick it to the defense when he’s throwing out there against them. Which he is, he makes it competitive for them. At the point where he is, that’s an important part of it for him.”
Considering Locker keeps getting hurt and doesn’t seem to fit what Whisenhunt likes to do and Whitehurst is a backup without much upside or potential to be a long-term solution, when does Mettenberger’s time come?
“We’re tying to get him better as we go, knowing with the way it’s gone for us at quarterback this year that's something that could happen at any time,” Whisenhunt said.
Playing him too early doesn’t sound like a concern at all.
“From my little time around Zach, I don’t think that there is much you can do to mess with his confidence,” Whisenhunt said. “I think the one thing he’s got going for him is that he had a tremendous number of plays in preseason and he had some success with that. So, at least we have a basis from where to start with him.
“As far as putting him out there too early or not putting him out there too early, there are all kinds of different schools of thought on that. I think he’s got to work hard and prepare as best he can. Because at some point he’ll play. He’ll get his chance.”
Right now the head coach’s tone suggests it’ll arrive as a result of injuries to the two guys ahead of him, not because of anything else.