Jake Locker admits that with his hip injury, he probably had a best-case scenario in terms of his condition.
Locker, who walked slowly and stiff-legged on Wednesday with his sprained hip, was walking nonetheless, and knows that things could have been much worse from the hit he took Sunday against the New York Jets.
“It was the best possible news for the type of injury it was, the best news I could have gotten,” Locker said. “I'm very thankful for that. I know there were a lot of prayers for me and I'm thankful for that and everybody that took the time to do that. It means a lot to me, and obviously somebody was looking down on me, and I appreciate it.”
Even so, Locker is expected to miss at least three weeks with the injury as he begins his rehab.
“You've just got to let it rest. I'm just trying to get the muscles firing again and get everything going so I can be out there as soon as I can,” Locker said.
After the hit, Locker wilted to the ground in pain and initially feared the worst.
“It was painful. I've never really felt anything like it at the time. It feels a lot better now after a couple of days of letting it settle down. But it hurt at the time,” he said. “I knew it was something with my hip. I just figured there was a big joint there and I was thinking about all the worst things that could happen.”
By the next morning after spending the night in the hospital, Locker was feeling better.
“It got better, it got progressively better especially when I woke up the next morning. It was sore, but it wasn't real painful. I was hoping for the best at that point. I was just hoping it wasn't anything crazy where I'd have an opportunity to play at some point this season,” he said.
Locker wouldn't give a specific timetable for his return, but said he just wants to rehab and return as soon as possible, even talking about playing this week against Kansas City, a game he has already been declared out of.
“That's kind of the tough thing. I'm just gonna keep working as hard as I can. I want to be out there next week. I want to be out there this week,” he said. “I'm gonna do everything I can to get out there as quick as possible and what that timetable is, I really don't know, but I'm gonna do everything possible to get out there as quick as I can.”
Locker, who had six touchdowns and no interceptions through the first four games of the season, at least outwardly didn't show any frustration over an injury interrupting his season.
“I'm thankful. There a lot of great people in this town. I've said multiple times, I'm proud to be a part of this team, but I'm proud to be a part of this city. I'm just thankful for the people that reached out and showed their support and said their prayers, because it helped me,” Locker said. “It's part of the game. I'm thankful for all the situations I'm put in. I believe that it happened to me for a reason and there's a bigger plan than maybe what I know. So I'm just gonna do everyhing I can to get back on the field, contribute to this football team and do it all with the best attitude possible.”
Several other Titans players were also held out of practice Wednesday.
Defensive tackle Sammie Hill (ankle) and running back Shonn Greene (knee) were out again and likely won't play Sunday.
Griffin fined $21,000 for hit
Titans safety Michael Griffin has been fined $21,000 by the NFL for his block on New York Jets receiver Stephen Hill following an Alterraun Verner interception on the opening series of the game.
Griffin was fined for hitting Hill, who suffered a concussion on the play, in the head and neck area. The veteran safety is appealing the fine.
Alterraun Verner's accomplishments through the first quarter of the season did not go unnoticed. On Wednesday, the Titans cornerback was honored as the AFC Defensive Player of the Week.
Last Sunday against the Jets, Verner intercepted two passes and recovered a fumble, giving him four picks and two fumble recoveries in four games in 2013.