How the Titans pace hurt Mariota and why Tannehill will thrive
The Titans slow pace of offense hurt Mariota, Tannehill must speed up the pace to succeed.
Over the past few years the Tennessee Titans offense has been a pain to watch at times.
Since Marcus Mariota was drafted by the Titans in 2015, the Titans’ pace of offense has consistently been one of the slowest in the league. For some unknown reason, the team invested everything into Mariota, but wouldn’t run a fast offense like he was used to in Oregon. While in college, Marcus Mariota didn’t spend too much time between plays, but his second year in the NFL the Titans offense was dead last in offensive pace.
Pat Thorman has kept a ranking of each NFL team and their neutral-situation snaps pace rankings. Since 2015 the Titans have ranked, respectively, 25th, 32nd, 28th, 23rd, and 19th last season.
One reason to justify why the Tennessee Titans jumped into the top 20 last season is the emergence of Ryan Tannehill. Everything about the Titans offense improved when Tannehill took over.
This statistic could be the reason that after so much success in college, Marcus Mariota was never able to get things rolling in the NFL. Mariota came from a system at Oregon that thrived on getting to the line of scrimmage fast and not taking their foot off of the throat of the defense. Once Oregon got rolling offensively, Chip Kelly and Marcus Mariota would speed things up drastically, which made it very hard for the defense to change coverages.
"However, out-scheming Chip Kelly often takes more defensive adjustments than it would for any other coach in the game today simply because when Oregon “gets on a roll,” it becomes incredibly hard for a defensive coordinator to identify and call proverbial counters to Oregon’s rapid pace and subsequent play calls, effectively handcuffing the defense to a handful of coverages.via JOSH SCHLICHTER"
Going from one extreme of offense to the opposite end of the spectrum doesn’t seem like the best way to transition a rookie QB into the NFL. If Marcus Mariota was allowed to speed up the Tennessee Titans offense maybe he would’ve been a little more comfortable and could have been a much better quarterback.
Tannehill can succeed with a faster offense
Now, with Tannehill at QB, the Tennessee Titans have decided to speed up. Having Ryan Tannehill at QB for the last half of the season helped the team finish 19th in offensive pace. Running at a faster pace makes the defense rely much more on instincts because they don’t have much time to take a look at how you are lined up. This could prove to be very beneficial for Ryan Tannehill because teams will instinctively bite on play-action after Derrick Henry puts together a couple of successful runs.
Having rookie Darrynton Evans as a change of pace allows the Titans to speed up the offense more as well. He will take some of the load off of Derrick Henry being able to keep fresh running backs will allow the Titans to move the ball at a much faster pace.
Expect the Tennessee Titans offense to continue to speed up and as a result, you can expect much more production from the team’s skill players. After all, more snaps means more opportunities for everybody.