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Munchak expects Locker back in ‘weeks’


October 02. 2013 1:01AM
The Associated Press

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. — While Jake Locker will miss a “few weeks” with a sprained hip, coach Mike Munchak says the Titans are encouraged by how the quarterback already is moving around.


Exactly how many games Locker misses depends on how quickly he recovers.


“If anyone’s going to get back quick, it’s him,” Munchak said Tuesday night during his weekly radio show on 104.5 The Zone WGFX-FM. “We know he’s going to miss a few games and now it’s just going to be a matter of how well he rehabs and how quickly it comes around to see exactly when. We won’t know for a couple weeks how close he could be to playing.”


The Titans released a statement earlier Tuesday, saying a second MRI exam was “reassuring” and confirmed Locker did not suffer major damage to his hip joint. Locker sprained his right hip and also his right knee.


Munchak had dismissed reports Monday that Locker would miss at least a month and possibly up to eight weeks, saying everyone was just “guessing.” He said then they needed the second MRI exam because Locker had swelling in his hip. Munchak said Tuesday night they wanted to be cautious.


“Then today they said that this looks a lot better than we thought,” Munchak said. “He’s still got a lot of work ahead of him no doubt, but it’s good news to know that he’s got just a sprain of the hip area and also the knee.”


Munchak said Locker started his rehabilitation Tuesday and also took part in the quarterbacks’ weekly session.


Ryan Fitzpatrick will start Sunday for the Titans (3-1) against Kansas City (4-0), and Tennessee has not made any roster move yet to add another quarterback to the roster. Rusty Smith already is on the practice squad, but the Titans would have to release someone else to promote him to the roster in a move that would not have to be made until Saturday.


Vikings QB situation murky


EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Most of the Minnesota Vikings fans, and even many of the players, seem to have made a decision on who should start at quarterback when their team comes out of the bye.


Coach Leslie Frazier isn’t ready make that call just yet.


Frazier said Tuesday that he wants to see how Christian Ponder’s injured ribs progress through the bye week before he makes a decision on who will start at home against Carolina on Oct. 13.


Frazier spoke two days after backup Matt Cassel helped engineer the Vikings’ first win of the season. Cassel completed 16 of 25 passes for 248 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions in a 34-27 victory over the Steelers in London on Sunday and brought an efficiency and big-play ability to the offense that hasn’t been there all season.


Ponder has struggled this season. He has completed 59 percent of his passes with two touchdowns and five interceptions in the first three games, all losses for the Vikings.


Cassel wasn’t exactly Peyton Manning in his first action of the season. But the veteran who was signed in the offseason to backup Ponder looked much more comfortable in the pocket while bringing better timing and rhythm to the offense.




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