Jake Locker appears to be on track to start Sunday for the Tennessee Titans against the San Francisco 49ers.
Locker, per a source, came through a full week in good shape with his reps increasing each day, and on Saturday did not suffer any setbacks as he attempts to come back from a sprained MCL and a sprained hip suffered three weeks ago against the New York Jets.
In Locker’s absence, the Titans have lost two straight games with Ryan Fitzpatrick at the controls, falling to Kansas City and Seattle.
If the Titans start Locker against the 49ers, there is a certain amount of risk involved, given that he won’t be as mobile as usual with the knee, which has a big brace on it.
Also, the Titans have switched centers, and rookie Brian Schwenkie will be playing in his first NFL regular-season game, and will have the task of not only getting used to snapping the ball to Locker, but also making the line calls that will help protect the quarterback.
Locker had said Thursday that he was preparing as if he was going to start on Sunday as the 3-3 Titans face a tough 49ers defense.
Locker took the majority of the starters' reps on Friday, and Coach Mike Munchak indicated after practice that Locker was in an all-in or all-out situation this Sunday, meaning that if he was well enough to suit up, he would start. If not, he would be inactive with an eye toward returning after the bye week when the Titans play the St. Louis Rams.
Ironically, last year, Locker missed five games with a shoulder injury and played in the game just before the bye week at Miami, when most thought he would be out until after the bye week.