NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee left tackle Michael Roos, who has played more games than any other offensive lineman since 2005, will have surgery to repair his right knee and may have played his final game with the Titans.
Coach Ken Whisenhunt said Thursday that Roos won't play against Jacksonville on Sunday, but declined to discuss the specific injury or if Roos' season is over.
"A large part of that is going to depend on what the rehab process is and all that," Whisenhunt said. "I don't know the details of what's going to be involved with the surgery. That's a question that will be asked or answered later."
A 10-year veteran, Roos is in the final year of his contract, and he said Wednesday he faced either a short-term recovery or season-ending surgery.
Roos has played 148 games since being drafted out of Eastern Washington in 2005, missing one start in 2012 because of an appendectomy. Dominic Raiola of Detroit is closest with 145 games played in that span, and only nine NFL players have played in every possible game since 2005.
His injury means rookie Taylor Lewan, the No. 11 draft selection overall out of Michigan, will make his first NFL start against the Jaguars (0-5). The Titans made Lewan the third tackle selected in May, a move that looked like a luxury pick with Roos such a dependable player for a team that already had signed right tackle Michael Oher to a four-year deal in March.
"Really the whole deal about drafting him was because we felt he was a really good player who's going to play for us for a long time," Whisenhunt said. "That was the point. Am I happy that we have him? Absolutely. But Michael Roos did a good job for us. He's a good pro. I really appreciated the work and the effort that he did. Hopefully that portion of being a good pro rubs off on Taylor and he plays well."
Lewan has similar size to Roos with both tackles being 6-foot-7, though Lewan is a little lighter listed at 309 pounds. Roos is considered more of a technician with Lewan a more physical tackle bringing a feisty attitude to the offensive line. The rookie already has two penalties in limited playing time, and Whisenhunt said they've talked about the fine line between being intense and hurting the team and doesn't expect that to be an issue.
The rookie said he'll probably be indebted to Roos for how much he learned from the veteran, and Lewan is excited at his opportunity.
"You need to play with fire, and I'm a firm believer you need to play through the whistle with a little bit of nastiness, have a defensive mentality on the offensive side of the ball," Lewan said. "But yeah, there's a time and place for everything. You can't get penalties and affect your team in a negative way."
Lewan will be tested by the Jaguars who rank second in the NFL with 16 sacks. Jake Locker missed a second straight practice with his injured right thumb with Charlie Whitehurst possibly starting his second game in three weeks for the Titans (1-4).
I really wish I could tell you more, but it's going to come down to him being able to grip it and throw it," Whisenhunt said of Locker. "That's going to be what ultimately determines when he can go. He's throwing it a little bit, but that's expected. It's just getting through that last piece of it."
Lewan now is one of three starting linemen drafted since 2013. Oher and left guard Andy Levitre, their top free agent signee in March 2013, both have played in 85 games in six seasons, though Oher also played in 10 playoff games with Baltimore.
"They've just got to do their jobs," Whisenhunt said. "That's really what it's about."