May 1, 2015; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans first round draft pick Marcus Mariota (left) answers questions from the media as with executive vice president and general manager Ruston Webster (center) and head coach Ken Whisenhunt (right) look on during the press conference at Saint Thomas Sports Park. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports
As the Tennessee Titans’ first-round pick in the 2015 NFL Draft made his way to Music City to be officially introduced in a ceremony on Friday evening, you have to wonder is he is happy to be a Titan, or if he was hoping his former Duck coach Chip Kelly would perform magic and somehow make him a Philadelphia Eagle?
I think Marcus Mariota might be happy to be a Tennessee Titan!
Granted, he has the future of General Manager Ruston Webster and head coach Ken Whisenhunt, as well as the happiness of fans in Nashville in his hands as he tries to learn the Whisenhunt offense in the span of a few months, but it pales to the pressure cooker that is the “City of Brotherly Love” where they booed Santa Clause.
It got me thinking…I wonder how bad Mariota wanted Chip Kelly to pull off a miracle and move up to the second position?
Even though fans at LP Field are ready for a winner on the field, I think they will give him time to develop before they are ready to run him out of town. And all indications are that he should be ready to start against Jameis Winston and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on September 13th.
"”Right now it’s an opportunity to learn as much as I can,” Mariota said. ”I want to be able to come in and contribute and be the best teammate I can be. And in order to do that I need to be on top of my stuff.”"
Coach Whisenhunt and his staff have spent time in the last three weeks, scheming an offense that will fit Mariota in anticipation of drafting the 2014 Heisman Trophy winner.
"”I think it is fair to say you expect him to start,” Whisenhunt said. ”Is it going to be difficult for a quarterback to come in and start this first year? It’s shown to be tough, but Ben (Roethlisberger) had pretty good success the first year he started with us. I know it can be done. But I really like the things that Marcus brings to the table that will hopefully enable him to do that.”Both the Titans and Whisenhunt need Mariota to be their franchise quarterback."
I was glad to see that the Titans held their price and didn’t trade the second pick. I think Marcus Mariota will be good for Music City, and in turn I think Music City will be a nice place for him to develop as an NFL quarterback.
I tend to agree with most analysts including Trent Dilfer, that although Jameis Winston is the more NFL ready quarterback today, Marcus Mariota in the right hands, has the potential to be the better quarterback in the future.
We do know he is more mature, and I don’t think Jameis Winston will out-work the Oregon star to get better.
And after the dust settles, Marcus Mariota is better off in Nashville than he would be in Philadelphia, and I think he is smart enough to know that!