The Tennessee Titans may or may not have Marcus Mariota available to them Sunday when they face the Miami Dolphins.
Because of Mariota’s hamstring issue, the start could fall to backup quarterback Matt Cassel as well.
But in explaining their signing of Brandon Weeden on Tuesday to be their third quarterback, Titans coach Mike Mularkey said Wednesday that Colin Kaepernick was never a consideration. Of course, that much was evident with the fact that Kaepernick was not brought in when the Titans auditioned quarterbacks Tuesday before deciding on Weeden.
Mariota was listed as limited in Wednesday’s practice, and Mularkey indicated that his starting QB could possibly play Sunday, even if he does not practice during the week. Right now, the Titans are wait and see on Mariota.
“I hope (he progresses), that’s the plan,” Mularkey said. “I can’t predict it, but that’s kind of the plan. Anybody that’s injured, you’d like to see them progress, get better.”
That happened with DeMarco Murray two weeks ago when he had a hamstring injury, as he did not practice until Friday. Though listed as limited, Mariota did very little Wednesday, Mularkey admitted.
“I mean we didn’t ask him to do very much, we were smart with him. We did what we thought he could do, and that wasn’t very much, but enough. We’re going to be smart with him,” Mularkey said.
The Kaepernick option was never considered, as the Titans brought in T.J. Yates, Matt Barkley and Matt McGloin to work out along with Weeden. Mularkey said it was because the offense Kaepernick was in with the 49ers the past few years was not really compatible with the Titans’ scheme, whereas Weeden’s offenses he ran in Houston and Dallas were similar.
“Familiarity of the offense, very similar things at least from Dallas, even in Houston there’s, where he came last, some familiarity. As quickly as we could get somebody up to speed in a short amount of time, he had the advantage over everybody,” Mularkey said. “I know he’s (Kaepernick) not familiar with our offense. I know T.J. Yates had some experience with it in Atlanta and with us for a couple of weeks. That was about it.”
The decision anyway on who was brought in for workouts was out of Mularkey’s hands as the front office made those decisions.
“That’s upstairs. They bring in who they feel, especially in the middle of the season, can get up to speed for this weekend, as quickly as possible. That comes from upstairs,” Mularkey said.
Kaepernick, who some believe has been blackballed by the league for beginning the anthem kneel protest last year, continues to wait for the phone to ring. His college teammate, Titans receiver Rishard Matthews, said he knows Kaepernick is ready if an opportunity comes.
“I know for a fact that he is prepared and ready to go. I’ve known him for a long time and he’s one of the hardest-working dudes I’ve ever been around. I spoke to him the other day and he was talking about having a 5:30 workout the next morning. So I know he’s ready,” Matthew said.