Marcus Mariota has been the talk of the town since his historic pro debut Sunday afternoon. And deservedly so, he had a perfect qb rating for goodness’ sake.
While impressive, and certainly the catalyst, Marcus Mariota wasn’t the only reason for the Tennessee Titans’ 42-14 beatdown of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Plenty of players pitched in on both sides of the ball.
Especially his fellow rookie classmates, who also had impressive opening day performances.
Rookie fourth round pick Angelo Blackson made the most of his time on the defensive line, recording three tackles…and registering the first sack of his career. His stout play against the run, and good play overall, just made the deepest and most talented position on the team even deeper.
Rookie outside linebacker Deiontrez Mount waited until opening day to make his splash. The Bucs were driving in Tennessee’s territory, and looking to sway the momentum, when the sixth round pick intercepted Jameis Winston. A huge play at that point in the game.
It was also a welcomed sign, as the Titans made no secret of their desire to upgrade the backup linebackers.
21 year old rookie third round pick Jeremiah Poutasi started at right tackle, and the fact that you didn’t hear much from him means that he did a good job. No backbreaking penalties, no deer in the headlights for Poutasi. An overall impressive debut.
Tennessee’s second fourth round pick, fullback Jalston Fowler, contributed in the run game as a lead blocker. He was also the primary target on Delanie Walker‘s second quarter td reception, which means that Fowler will be used in a variety of ways this season.
Because the game was out of hand at halftime, the Titans didn’t need to show much of their second round pick, wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham. Tennessee released veteran receiver Hakeem Nicks, and elected to keep only four receivers, so don’t expect DGB to remain quiet for long.
All and all, a day to remember for not just Mariota, but the Titans’ entire rookie class.