Reports: Mariota to sit, Gabbert to start vs. Colts

The Sports Xchange

December 30, 2018 at 10:40 am.

The Tennessee Titans are expected to have Blaine Gabbert under center for Sunday night’s pivotal game against the visiting Indianapolis Colts with fellow quarterback Marcus Mariota dealing with a stinger injury.

Multiple media outlets reported that Mariota will sit out due to the injury he sustained in Tennessee’s 25-16 win versus the Washington Redskins on Dec. 22.

Mariota officially is listed as questionable and reportedly will test his arm in pregame warmups. One source told ESPN, however, that an independent spine specialist has warned the Titans that further damage would put Mariota’s ability to throw the football at significant risk beyond this weekend.

“Big game and Marcus Mariota was intent on being out there,” NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Sunday morning. “But it just doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen with that stinger.”

The Titans (9-6) can clinch a playoff berth by beating the Colts (9-6) on Sunday (8:20 p.m. ET), and would win the AFC South title with a win and a loss by the Houston Texans to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Tennessee also has an outside chance of landing a first-round bye in the playoffs.

Mariota has thrown for 2,528 yards with 11 touchdowns and eight interceptions in 14 games this season. The 25-year-old Hawaiian has also rushed for a career-high 357 yards and two scores.

Gabbert has completed 43 of 72 passes for 461 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions this season.

The Titans signed free-agent quarterback Austin Davis this week, and he likely will be the backup quarterback against the Colts.