As training camp approaches, it means the Tennessee Titans move one day closer to the preseason, and eventually the regular season. As we inch further throughout the offseason, every day we will feature a training camp preview.
Today’s preview is on the quarterback group, where Jake Locker appears to have things pretty wrapped up for the starting spot, but Charlie Whitehurst and Zach Mettenberger should duel for the backup position.
Starter: Jake Locker
He’s been anything but consistent in three years with the Titans. Locker had his best start to a season last year, scoring seven touchdowns over the first four weeks and increased his completion percentage over those respective weeks (55, 56, 62 and 75). His passer rating was through the roof as well, notching at least a 90 or above four times during his condensed season.
Unfortunately for the quarterback a hip injury, and subsequently a season-ending foot injury dampened his standout year.
Despite the string of injuries, Locker showed better accuracy, finding talented receivers such as Kendall Wright across the middle and rookie Justin Hunter downfield for huge completions. He showed a willingness to stand in the pocket, opting not to tuck the ball and run quick as often. He had a poor running game to open up the passing game, which should improve with Dexter McCluster, Bishop Sankey and a brand new offense.
Backups: Charlie Whitehurst and Zach Mettenberger
There’s no question that Mettenberger will be trying to fight his way up the ladder sooner rather than later. It’s hard to see him replacing Whiethurst as the No. 2 quarterback on the roster. Mettenberger was a sixth round selection and is coming off a torn ACL. Whitehurst is entering his ninth season as a pro, and shifted over to Tennessee from San Diego to join his coach from last year.
Whitehurst is familiar with the offense and shouldn’t have any problems running it if Locker goes down. It’s just tough to see a rookie supplanting the old vet for the second spot on the roster.
Check back Tuesday for a preview of the running back group.