Two great charts to understand how great Marcus Mariota is

JACKSONVILLE, FL - DECEMBER 24: Marcus Mariota /

Dispelling some Marcus Mariota myths with two simple charts.

A lot of Tennessee Titans fans are realizing that the offseason is at peak awfulness. With little to talk about, Jameis Winston fans are starting to creep into the timeline and try to argue that they have the best young quarterback.

I’m not going to sit here and tell you that Winston isn’t going to be a good quarterback. He may be like so many other inefficient quarterbacks in the past who have gone on to win some games with great support.

However, if you still think that he is better than Marcus Mariota (or really in the same tier) then you aren’t watching the tape.

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A lot of people use the fact that Winston “has a better deep ball” while Marcus Mariota is labeled as a “system QB” that relies on check downs. That is nonsense, don’t be the one who says something so stupid on Twitter where everyone can read it.

Unlike some people on Twitter I won’t just use adjectives to describe Mariota and try to force you to take them as fact, I will rely on the numbers.

Check out this chart from Cian Fahey that charted how accurate the young QBs were last season at every level of the field:

If you cant see this is how much Mariota outranks Winston by at every level:

To 0 yards: +2.2%

1-5 yards: +4.68%

6-10 yards: +3.65%

11-15 yards: +8.11%

16-20 yards: +8.30%

21+ yards: +6.45%

There was not a single area where Winston has been more accurate than Marcus Mariota in 2016 and that is just a fact.

So, taking emotion out of it a logical argument would be, “Well, that isn’t fair because Mariota’s offense relies on short passes and a running game. Less volume in the deep passing game should mean you are more accurate. He isn’t getting nearly the amount of yardage through the air and big plays as Winston.”’s advanced stats show that Marcus Mariota’s average air yards were 4th best in the NFL. What that means is his throws ended up averaging more yards through the air than all but 3 QBs in the NFL.

So, if he threw a 8 yard out, but the player was actually 20 yards from him when he caught it, his air yards on that pass would be 20 yards, not 8. So it is a good metric that combines how strong a QB’s arm is AND how accurate they are.

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  • For a better visual representation of what that looks like, here is Mariota’s percentage of yards that came through the air instead of with YAC.

    Say what you want about Marcus Mariota, but if you are going to try to argue that he isn’t one of if not THE best quarterback in the NFL you are going to have to bring some numbers behind you.

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    People get away with saying “watch the film” and that a player is “phenomenal” because a team wins games, but if that was the case why did the Houston Texans beg the Browns to take a 2nd round pick just to take their QB away?

    I mean, by the “QB winz” logic, Brock led his team to the playoffs and 9 wins that fall directly on his shoulders right?

    Now that Marcus Mariota should have the weapons to compete with anyone, this is a year where some people may actually watch the QB dazzle before they open their mouths to talk about how he is a “system QB” again.