at Gillette Stadium on December 20, 2015 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.

Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota will miss the rest of the season with a right MCL sprain, ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports.

The rookie left Sunday’s game against the Patriots and did not return.

Mariota’s injury does not seem to be overly serious, but with the Titans sitting at 3-11 and well out of playoff contention, there was no reason to risk their young quarterback’s health. Second-year back-up Zach Mettenberger will start for the Titans in the team’s final two games. Mettenberger has completed 62.6 percent of his passes in 12 career games, throwing 11 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Mariota has had a relatively successful debut season, with 2,818 yards passing, a 62.2 percent completion rate, and 19 touchdowns against 10 interceptions. The rookie missed two games earlier in the season when he sprained his other MCL.

In a way, this injury is good for the Titans, as it helps them tank toward the No. 1 overall pick in next year’s draft. Tennessee is currently tied with Cleveland for the NFL’s worst record.

About Alex Putterman

Alex is a writer and editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has written for The Atlantic, VICE Sports,, and more. He is a proud alum of Northwestern University and The Daily Northwestern. You can find him on Twitter @AlexPutterman.