Right guard Chance Warmack elected to have surgery on his injured right hand, and the Tennessee Titans plan to place the former first-round pick on injured reserve.
The move could mean the end of the line with the Titans for the 10th overall pick in the 2013 draft.
“Chance opted for surgery on the finger. We had a long discussion with him, all of his options, and he chose to have the surgery. So we’ll place Chance on IR with that injury,” Titans coach Mike Mularkey said.
The Titans still would have the option of bringing him back to the active roster after a minimum of eight weeks if they chose to do so. On Monday, Mularkey indicated that if Warmack opted for surgery that it would be about a one month recovery process.
Warmack is in the final year of his contract with the Titans after the team declined a $11.9 million team option on the 2013 first-round pick in May of this year, making him a free agent next March.
“We’re gonna put him on IR. He can return, but it is an injury where he’s going to have to wear a club anyhow and when that time comes up, that’s a tough position to play with a club on your hand,” Mularkey said.
Mularkey indicated that the decision for surgery was made by Warmack and was not a mutual one between the player and the team.
“This was Chance’s personal decision to do. One of the options, that he could have played with a club. One of the options was to not have the surgery and not have a club like Sunday. That was an option as well,” Mularkey said.
The Titans will split reps in practice this week between newcomer Josh Kline and last year’s starting center Brian Schwenke.
Kline was picked up off waivers just before the season began, while Schwenke was dislodged from the starting lineup this year when the Titans signed free agent Ben Jones away from the Texans.
“We’re gonna evaluate the other two throughout the week and make a decision by week’s end,” Mularkey said.
With the open roster spot, the Titans will bring in another offensive lineman, but will decide whether or not to add one to the active roster or the practice squad.
Kline said he believes he is picking up the Titans offense and is working to get up to speed.
“I’ve still got a lot to learn but I’m still trying to get better every day and taking it step by step,” Kline said.
Schwenke said he is happy to have another opportunity to start.
“You don’t want to see anybody get hurt, and it sucks about Chance, but that’s what the NFL is all about. Someone will step up, and that’s what one of us will do. We don’t know who that is yet, but we’re gonna be good on Sunday,” Schwenke said.
In addition to Warmack, several other Titans were out of practice or limited on Wednesday, most notably tight end Delanie Walker, who sat out with a minor hamstring strain. Walker indicated that he expects to play Sunday vs. the Raiders.
Tight end Phillip Supernaw was limited with a lower back strain, while Derrick Morgan and Kendall Wright both did some limited work after both missed time with hamstring issues.
Cornerback Brice McCain had a twisted knee and sat out Wednesday, while Valentino Blake was out with a chest contusion.