Despite multiple reports to the contrary, Ken Whisenhunt announced in his weekly Monday press conference that Tennessee Titans rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger will not go on injured reserve but is likely to be doubtful for Sunday’s game against the New York Jets. Jake Locker will get the start if Mettenberger can’t go.
All reports indicate Mettenberger re-injured his shoulder in the Giants game after taking his 5th sack of the game. It is unclear whether the injured shoulder was significantly worsened by the hit. Still, with only three games remaining it seems likely Mettenberger can recover sufficiently to be able to play.
Why, then, don’t the Titans shut him down and put him on injured reserve? While on some level it makes sense to keep him around the team as a learning process. Keeping him involved with the team keeps him focused and in Nashville where the team can monitor his progress.
On the other hand, keeping Mettenberger active and around seems a bit of a slap in the face to Jake Locker. Does the team really need to keep reminding him he was never the guy and that this was a lost season for him? It was pretty clear the Titans were done with him and he is only starting because he is the de facto backup quarterback.
Finally, the Titans are dealing with a plethora of injuries at other spots such as defensive back, offensive line and wide receiver. Surely that roster spot is better served by a player who legitimately could play should someone else go down.
So what say you? Should the Titans go ahead and place Zach Mettenberger on injured reserve?