After a solid performance by Jake Locker in Saturday's preseason opener vs. the Seahawks, Tennessee Titans coach Mike Munchak has named the second-year quarterback the starter for Friday's game at Tampa Bay.
Locker replaced Matt Hasselbeck in the second quarter of the 27-17 loss to the Seahawks. It will be Locker's first start in an NFL uniform.
“It's a position he has not had a chance to be in yet, we want to put him through that drill,” Munchak said. “We started Matt last week, so we want to do the opposite this weekend.”
Munchak expects Locker and Hasselbeck to each receive about 20-to-25 snaps in Friday's exhibition. Both quarterbacks received a range of 15-to-18 snaps in the opener at Seattle.
Locker may be gaining confidence following an impressive effort in the two-minute drill Saturday. In Monday's practice, Locker threw with precision and finished with just two incompletions. The former University of Washington quarterback completed his first nine attempts of the afternoon, including a pass to wide receiver Damian Williams on the run. Locker's first read to wide receiver Nate Washington was taken away, but he remained patient and found Williams along the right sidelines.
Hasselbeck also had a strong practice on Monday with only four incompletions. The 36-year-old quarterback would have opened 5 of 5 had wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins not dropped an easy pass in a red-zone drill. Hasselbeck also ended on a high note with completions on his final four passes. Neither quarterback threw deep during the session.
11-on-11 Drills: Hasselbeck: 16-20, 0 TD, 0 INT; Locker: 18-20, 0 TD, 0 INT.
Day 12 Advantage: Even
Training Camp totals: Hasselbeck: 127-174, 5 TDs, 9 INTs; Locker: 143-204, 4 TDs, 3 INTs
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