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Titans unlikely to pick up fifth-year option on Jake Locker’s rookie deal, per report

Jake Locker deal: Tennessee Titans unlikely to pick up option on QBs rookie dealJake Locker has never played more than 11 games in a season. (Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

Uncertainty reigns in the Tennessee Titans backfield. The team is currently debating what to do with running back Chris Johnson, and it is also facing a difficult decision regarding starting quarterback Jake Locker.

The Titans hold a fifth-year option on Locker's rookie deal, giving them an out from the $13 million obligation in 2015 if they don't believe Locker is the quarterback of the future in Tennessee.

According to Jim Wyatt of the Tennesseean, the Titans are unlikely to pick up that option, potentially making Locker a free agent in 2015.

MORE COVERAGE: 2014 NFL Mock Draft: Bortles goes No. 1 | 2014 NFL free agency grades

There have been some mixed signals about whether or not Titans CEO Tommy Smith and new head coach Ken Whisenhunt believe Locker is the answer in Tennessee, and the decision not to pick up his option makes 2014 a "prove-it" year for the former first-round pick.

Locker has been injury-plagued in the past, but appeared to be on his way to the best season of his career in 2013. Of course, injuries then forced him to miss most of the season, so it makes perfect sense for the Titans to pass on making a big investment in a player who can't stay on the field.

If Locker can pick up where he left off in 2013, there is a chance the team could re-sign him in the offseason.

If he struggles, it can let him walk and search for a new quarterback without being on the books for $13 million in 2015.

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