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Ken Whisenhunt 'excited' for Jake Locker in Titans' O

New coach Ken Whisenhunt was noncommittal about Jake Locker as his starting quarterback in mid-January after accepting the Tennessee Titans job.

In an interview with The Tennessean's Jim Wyatt last week, Whisenhunt suggested that Locker will get the opportunity to prove he can be a franchise quarterback.


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"I am excited about finding out what he can do with our offense and trying to make things that he does well, have success with that," Whisenhunt said. "You want to try and tailor what we do to fit what his strengths are. ... I have liked what I've seen from Jake."

Whisenhunt and the front office have intimated concerns about Locker's ability to stay healthy for 16 games.

If Jay Cutler hadn't signed a contract extension in Chicago, the Titans might have placed Locker on the back burner to chase down the former Vanderbilt star. With no exciting options in free agency, Whisenhunt will see if he can keep Locker healthy and harness his raw talent.

Locker is in good hands with Whisenhunt, who has shown a deft touch with Ben Roethlisberger, Kurt Warner and Philip Rivers.

Here's what else we learned from Whiz's interview with The Tennessean:

» NFL Media columnist Michael Silver reported back in December that Chris Johnson is "almost certainly" gone if he doesn't take a pay cut. Johnson made it clear shortly thereafter that he has no intention of doing so. Since there is no March bonus payment due, Whisenhunt is content to delay the decision until later in the offseason. Our own Dan Hanzus has given Johnson a 95 percent chance of getting cut by the Titans.

» Asked to name players who have impressed in his evaluation process, Whisenhunt praised defensive end Derrick Morgan and defensive tackle Jurrell Casey. The secondary also played well, according to Whisenhunt, but the Titans are in danger of losing Pro Bowl cornerback Alterraun Verner.

» On the other side of the ball, Whisenhunt singled out Kendall Wright as a "dynamic playmaker," which gibes with the previous coaching staff's assessment.

On the latest edition of the "Around The League Podcast," the guys debate Joe Philbin's future in Miami before playing another round of "Win Wess' Toaster."

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