Coming off a season in which first-year quarterbacks lit the world on fire, Jake Locker enters his third campaign firmly attached to the hot seat.
"I was there in Ben's second year, and right away you kind of understood that -- even in his second year -- he was gonna be a good quarterback, a guy that could make plays," Washington told Terry McCormick of TitanInsider. "That's the same thing with Jake. He's a guy who can make plays. I tell everybody all the time, this is football, and it's a gladiator sport, but it's not a dumb man's sport."
ESPN's Ron Jaworski prodded Locker on Monday as having a "long way to go," but there's hope internally that new offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains has cooked up a scheme that will mix zone blocking with a slew of play-action offerings, rollouts and bootlegs.
As third-string Titans passer Rusty Smith told NFL.com's Jeff Darlington last week, "Everyone -- everyone -- wants to see him succeed."
To get there, Locker's footwork needs work, and he must find a way to stay healthy. The Big Ben parallel makes a dash of sense -- especially in terms of Locker's gun-slinging mentality and arm strength -- but until he can produce a full season, the comparisons out of Tennessee ring hollow.
Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.