Sep 29, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Jake Locker (10) on the sideline against the New York Jets during the first half at LP Field. Tennessee won 38-13. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Jake Locker Expected to Start vs San Francisco 49ers

There’s a little more than 26 hours before opening kickoff. If everything goes well, it sounds like Jake Locker will return as the Tennessee Titans starting quarterback. Locker has missed the last two games with a sprained hip and knee injury. It appears as though both are stable enough for the young signal-caller to compete with.

For Locker, it’s a stunning turn of events after he was carted off the field fewer than three weeks ago. When this week started, the chances for Locker suiting up were an afterthought. He wasn’t supposed to play until a Week 9 matchup against the St. Louis Rams. Even if he were ready for Week 7, wouldn’t the Titans want to give him the additional time off?

Apparently not. With a 3-3 record, the Titans aren’t in a position where they can start throwing games. Not if they have any plans on making postseason noise in 2013. Count me among the people who supports this decision 100 percent.

It’s crucial that the offensive line protects Locker. Expect a run-heavy offense, at least from the get-go. Helping Tennessee is that many of the 49ers top defensive linemen are either out with injuries or playing through them. That doesn’t include Aldon Smith, who’ll probably miss the rest of the season with personal issues.

What do our readers think? Are the Titans panicking here or taking too much of a risk? Good risk from Mike Munchak? Answer in the comments, Twitter or Facebook.

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