NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- On Monday, Mike Munchak stood in front of reporters and said, until I’m told otherwise, I'm the leader of this team.
Quarterback Jake Locker should have done the same.
David Boclair of the Nashville Post argues that well in this piece.
Like his coach, Locker lacks the presidential persona required of and expected from his position. And it’s not a media thing here, it’s a public presence thing -- we just happen to be the middle men.
Locker had a chance to set a tone, establish some expectations, show us offseason pocket presence. He chose not to. At a time when he should have asserted himself and let people know he views himself as the team's top leader, I’d venture a guess he didn’t even consider it.
That's not a fatal flaw. But it is disappointing for a guy heading toward his fourth year.
There is a lot of confusion about Locker going forward.
Munchak still may not be back. Chris Johnson may not be back.
But no matter the coach and the other quarterbacks on the roster, there is no reason Locker won’t be back.
The Titans have an option for his fifth year -- 2015 -- this spring. That would line him up for a 2015 season paid at the transition tag rate, north of $13 million. They shouldn’t go near that, obviously.
But that has no bearing on 2014. The fourth year of his initial contract is guaranteed and worth only $2.09 million with a cap number just over $4 million.
The only reason the Titans would cut him would be if they were angry with him (they’re not), had the evidence to judge him a bust (they don’t, that’s a scenario for Blaine Gabbert) or if their roster was loaded with better quarterbacks (it won’t be).
I can’t pretend to know his status on opening day of 2014, though I expect he will be in line to start.
His spot on the roster is not, and should not be, in question.