Injuries are a part of every football team. Luckily for the Tennessee Titans, injuries are not a big factor this week going into the matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Delanie Walker – Tight End – Ankle
Tight end Delanie Walker is still not over his ankle injury that was suffered before the bye week. He had not practiced this week until a limited session Friday, but that should not keep him off the field on Sunday. Walker was able to play last week and actually had a productive game. It would make sense for Mike Mularkey to try to get Walker as healthy as possible by keeping him off the bum ankle.
If this was a rookie, he would probably be practicing fully to get chemistry with the team. Walker is not a rookie, though, and has shown an excellent handle of the playbook. He will have no problem stepping back into the lead tight end role on the roster. If for some reason Walker does not play against the Bengals, Jonnu Smith will surely get a bigger role in the offense. For now, expect Walker to play and have a solid game against the 3-5 Bengals.
Eric Decker – Wide Receiver – Illness
The veteran wide receiver missed some practice this week with an illness, but he returned Friday. Much like Walker, this probably will not keep Decker out of the game on Sunday. Decker has had a bit of a down season with the Titans and is honestly taking playing time away from Corey Davis and Taywan Taylor. Although he has had a down year, Decker is a good locker room guy and has produced in important spots. This illness is just something that he needed a day or two off for. Expect Decker to be on the field against Cincinnati on Sunday.
Derrick Morgan – Linebacker – Knee
The Titans linebacker was held out of practice this week with a knee injury. There have not been any indications that Morgan will miss significant time with this injury. The knee is always a tricky one because it is easily exploited by opposing teams. Morgan will most likely play, but may be a step slow on the field. As of now it does not look like too bad of injury. Potentially Mike Mularkey kept Morgan out just to give him some rest.
Quinton Spain – Guard – Toe
The infamous turf toe is back this week. Things are not looking good for Quinton Spain since his injury in Week 7, and he has been ruled out for this week. Spain can really miss some serious time with this injury and that would be a big blow to the Titans offensive line. Brian Schwenke has filled in nicely at the guard spot, but Spain is the starter and opens up holes for the running game. Spain has consistently been held out of practice with no timetable for return.
Overall, this has been a light injury week in Nashville (knock on wood). The Titans are home against an opponent that they can do well against in the Cincinnati Bengals. There are no guarantees in sports, but Tennessee should be able to take advantage of the health of the team to attack the Bengals’ game plan. Hopefully the injury gods are on the Titans’ side this week and we do not have a big report next week.