Mariota Says Chances of Playing Sunday "Pretty Good"

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Marcus Mariota was held out of Wednesday's practice as the Titans began preparations for Sunday's game with the Falcons.

The Titans rookie quarterback made it clear he still hopes to play on Sunday against the Falcons, however.

"Pretty good,'' Mariota said when asked about his chances of playing. "We are going to continue to take it day by day and see how it goes. I hope to play on Sunday."

Mariota suffered a sprained medial collateral ligament in his left knee against the Dolphins.

His status for Sunday's game will be determined later in the week, coach Ken Whisenhunt said.

"He is doing well, Whisenhunt said of Mariota. "He is making progress and we'll monitor it as the days go. He's a tough guy and he wants to play. We just have to make sure he is OK to play."

 Mariota said he suffered a similar injury in college at Oregon and he didn't miss a game.

"It feels pretty good,'' Mariota said. "It has felt better every single day and hopefully it will continue to feel better. … It is not really a pain thing with me. Hopefully moving forward it will continue to feel better and I'll be ready to play on Sunday."

Mariota was injured early in the second quarter of the team's 38-10 loss to the Dolphins when Miami defensive end Olivier Vernon dove and hit Mariota on the back of his left leg after he released the football.

Mariota finished the game with a brace on his left knee. He was not wearing a knee brace on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, Vernon told reporters he'd been fined by the NFL for the hit.

"That is the opinion of the NFL,'' Mariota said. "It is what it is. I don't really have any say in that – that is up to the league."

Quarterback Zach Mettenberger, who finished Sunday's game, is Mariota's back-up. The Titans also have veteran Charlie Whitehurst on the roster.

In five games, Mariota has thrown for 1,239 yards, nine touchdown and five interceptions, with a 93.2 rating.

Mariota said he'd like to prove his toughness for his teammates by being able to play.

"It is important,'' Mariota said. "You have to be able to show that you buy in to what is going on here, and I am going to do my best to make sure that I am prepared and hopefully can go on Sunday."

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