Locker out Sunday; fines for Jets?

Updated: September 30, 2013, 4:49 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The Tennessee Titans are awaiting more test results on quarterback Jake Locker's injured hip, but the belief is he could miss four to eight weeks, sources told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

Coach Mike Munchak said Monday afternoon that Locker spent Sunday night in a hospital but was released from the facility before midday Monday. He also said Locker would definitely miss the team's Week 5 game against the Kansas City Chiefs and that the quarterback has a sprained MCL in his right knee in addition to his hip injury.

Locker's initial X-rays Sunday were negative. Doctors want to wait until swelling reduces in the hip and he is scheduled undergo a second MRI on Tuesday. 

Trauma to and swelling around the hip made the initial pictures inconclusive, and there was nothing obvious on the first MRI, Munchak said.

According to Munchak, the team does not think it's a season-ending injury and does not anticipate putting the quarterback on injured reserve with a designation to return that would keep him out for eight weeks. He said any reports discussing a timetable for Locker's absence did not originate from the team.

"It's a blow to the team, no doubt about it," Munchak said.

Locker, who was carted off the field and taken to the hospital by ambulance after being injured during Sunday's 38-13 win over the New York Jets, issued a statement Monday through the team.

[+] EnlargeJake Locker
Don McPeak/USA TODAY SportsThe Titans' Jake Locker was carted off after being hit by the Jets' Muhammad Wilkerson on Sunday.

"I want to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers over the last 24 hours. I am going to work as hard as I can to get back as soon as I can. I believe in this team and will do whatever I can to help us win in the meantime," he said.

Locker was at the team facility for treatment Monday before he went home.

Locker suffered the injury to his right hip in the third quarter on a hit by Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson.

Wilkerson said he didn't know at first that Locker was hurt and that a ref told him the hit was legal.

"If it was late, the ref would have thrown a flag," Wilkerson said. "They didn't throw a flag."

The NFL, however, is considering fining Wilkerson and Jets linebacker Quinton Coples for the hit that injured Locker, a league source told ESPN. Even though the hits did not draw a flag, the league believes Wilkerson led with his helmet and Coples hit the quarterback after the ball was gone, the source said.

On Monday, Jets coach Rex Ryan defended Wilkerson.

"Obviously, it was unfortunate," Ryan said. "Clearly, in my opinion, I thought Muhammad did what you're supposed to do -- lower your target. He did that. Obviously, there wasn't a malicious intent on his part at all. In my opinion, I thought it was a clean hit."

Munchak has already spoken to the league office about the hits.

"I think they are two hits, especially the second one, that [were] unnecessary," he said.

Before the injury, Locker completed 18 of 24 passes for 149 yards with three touchdowns and a 130.0 passer rating. It was the first three-TD game of his career.

Locker gave a slight wave as the cart neared the tunnel exiting the field. Veteran backup Ryan Fitzpatrick took his place and went 3-of-8 for 108 yards and a touchdown.

The Titans are 3-1 and have not yet committed a turnover. Munchak said the team has told Fitzpatrick, who will now start, that it's important to keep the streak intact. One turnover won't kill the team so long as the timing isn't terrible.

The Titans will bring in quarterbacks to work out on Tuesday, including former Giants quarterback David Carr, a source told ESPN Senior NFL Insider Chris Mortensen.

ESPN NFL Insiders Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen, ESPN.com Titans reporter Paul Kuharsky, ESPN.com Jets reporter Rich Cimini and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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