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Thursday, September 22, 2011
Munchak's stance on losing a job to injury

By Paul Kuharsky
ESPN.com

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Had a minute to talk with Mike Munchak about something many of you have been asking me: What’s his stance on a starter losing him job to injury, particularly as it pertains to Chris Hope?

Munchak said in the short term, he doesn't think it should be possible for a player to lose his job because of an injury. But, in a scenario where a guy misses an extended streak, things can change. If Hope missed six or seven weeks and Jordan Babineaux was playing well in his place and the Titans were faring well, things could be different. They could stand pat. They could ease Hope back in a little at a time.

It's not going to be an issue in Hope's case.

His bad shoulder meant he was very limited in practice on Thursday. It seems likely he will miss his second consecutive game Sunday, when the Titans host the Broncos.

But he could be in line to return Oct. 2 at Cleveland. Even if Hope wasn’t back until the game at Pittsburgh a week later, Munchak’s answer told me the veteran safety will be reinstalled into the lineup.

That doesn’t mean Babineaux won’t be able to challenge him or won’t get another chance to play.