An MRI on Tennessee Titans quarterback Vince Young’s injured right hamstring showed only a mild strain, according to Coach Jeff Fisher on Monday.
Young, who pulled up at the end of a 44-yard scramble in the second quarter, did not return to Sunday’s 44-7 rout of the St. Louis Rams, giving way to Kerry Collins.
“We want him to practice. We want him to play,” Fisher said. “It’s Monday. The MRI was good, and we’ll classify it as a mild hamstring strain and we’ll take it from there.”
Young completed 6 of 8 passes for 132 yards and a touchdown before exiting the game. After the game, he was asked if he could have returned to the game if it was the playoffs, and Young answered, “Oh, yeah, definitely. Safety-wise, like I always say, I’m going to listen to the doctors and do what they say because they know best.”
Sunday’s game for the Titans isn’t a playoff game, but the 6-7 Titans’ slim playoff hopes hang in the balance as they face the 7-6 Miami Dolphins, needing a victory to stay in the AFC wild-card chase.
Fisher indicated that Young wouldn’t necessarily have to practice all week in order to play on Sunday, and said he hoped to have Young available by Wednesday’s practice.
“Hopefully, we’ll have him on the practice field on Wednesday. If he is not, you’ll be aware of it. We haven’t ruled him out for the ballgame,” Fisher said.
Fisher acknowledged that if Young does play, it’s unlikely that he would be 100 percent, but that he remains optimistic and encouraged regarding the injury.
“We’re not going to risk him to further injury. It is likely that he’ll be limited if he plays,” Fisher said. “It’s unlikely he will be 100 percent. But still, there’s different levels. Again, we’re encouraged and he’s day-to-day.”
The Titans are 5-1 since Young reassumed the starting quarterback position after an 0-6 start. Teammates realize that his resurgence as given them a spark late in the year, but also remain confident in Collins, especially after he completed 11 of 19 passes for 154 yards and a touchdown off the bench on Sunday.
“It would be a blow, because that’s our quarterback,” nickelback Vincent Fuller said. “He’s given us a spark on the offensive side of the ball, but at the same time last year Kerry Collins came off the bench and played well, and we won 13 of 16 games. We know he can get the job done, regardless of what happened when he was the starting quarterback at the end of the season. He had us in position to win the majority of our games, and we know he can get the job done.”
Collins said after the win on Sunday that he is ready to retake command if necessary.
“Whatever I’m asked to do this week, I’ll do. Hopefully he’ll be back and we’ll get him back in there,” Collins said. “If he’s not ready to go, I’ll look forward to getting ready this week and playing Sunday.”
Fisher also indicated that the Titans would not necessarily have to move quarterback John David Booty up from the practice squad to active duty, leading to speculation that Young will at least be well enough to back up against the Dolphins.