Going into the season the Tennessee Titans were “committed” to giving former first round draft pick quarterback Jake Locker a chance to prove himself. Through Locker’s first three seasons he had his ups and downs. Often Locker showed the ability to make plays with his arm and his legs, but he continually displayed below average accuracy for an NFL quarterback. Each season he showed progress, but each season ended with an injury, until this one; he was benched.
Enter this years 6th round draft pick Zach Mettenberger.
In his first start the quarterback started slow, but had a strong second half against the Texans throwing for 200 plus yards and two touchdowns.
In his second start he started fast against the Ravens, leading the offense on multiple scoring drives in the first half. The offense sputtered in the second half and was unable to put points on the board.
In his third start against the Steelers he threw a pick six on his first pass of the game, BUT bounced back and went on to throw for 250 plus yards and two touchdowns.
All three games ended in a loss and that doesn’t set well with the rookie quarterback, which he has stated to the press repeatedly this week. He acknowledges that strides have been made offensively, but he is out there to win games for the Titans.
Mettenberger has improved in each game thus far. He has displayed a strong arm and the ability to stand tall in the pocket while progressing through his reads. He displays a confidence level and moxie on the football field that is rarely seen by a rookie in the NFL He is a player that seems to “get it” and has done everything thus far you want from your quarterback, such as shouldering the blame and taking the spotlight off his fellow teammates, even if it is not his fault necessarily. This is a good example of accountability and is a good way to win over a locker room.
The Titans look like they may have found a late round steal in Mettenberger. If he continues to improve and displays the same positive traits he has thus far, the Titans might have their starting quarterback for next season and many more after.