The Tennessee Titans are playing their second preseason game today, and there is a lot of things to look at now that we know what to expect from this team. Here are the things that stood out most to me.
Marcus Mariota looks really good.
For the first time today we got to see Marcus Mariota use his legs. He should have been dead to rights with Aaron Donald penetrating in the backfield on a first down play action play, but Mariota calmly booted to his left and leaped over his hands to make a huge 35-yard throw to Craig Stevens.
Dexter McCluster screwed Mariota out of a touchdown with a terrible drop, which begs the question why is this guy still on the team?
So Mariota ended his night 5-8, 59 yards but honestly that line should read 6-8 for 70 yards and a TD if not for an awful drop. This kinda summarized Mariota's night.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Useful, that. <a href="https://t.co/ozkpoIQI0H">https://t.co/ozkpoIQI0H</a></p>— Chris Sprow (@SprowESPN) <a href="https://twitter.com/SprowESPN/status/635612109276061697">August 24, 2015</a></blockquote>
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It makes these games fun when you have players to watch for the full four quarters and between Marcus Mariota, Zach Mettenberger and these receivers make it fun to watch for the full game. I would imagine that we get to see more of Zach Mettenberger in the next half, but he may want to sit on his impressive 7-9, 91 yard, TD stat line in tact.
In case you can't tell, Mett looked great and this doesn't mean that Marcus Mariota looked worse it just means that for the first time in maybe ever, the Tennessee Titans have a very enviable situation at the quarterback position.
So remember how we all wrote off Bishop Sankey last week, maybe all this talk about benching him and a new offensive line did him good. Not only was he getting yards after contact, but when the holes were there he screamed through, building a head of steam and getting some nice, quick yards.
Passing game on all cylinders.
Whether it was Hakeem Nicks, Dorial Green-Beckham, Chase Coffman, Craig Stevens, or Kendall Wright. Everyone who was thrown to really did a great job tonight in the first half. Now, some of that may be that the offensive line did a great job protecting these guys passing (who also did a great job) but this team is night and day better than where it was this time last year.
Big Al Woods
Al Woods made his presence known from play one of this game. Woods just absolutely demolished the center on several occasions. Most notably on the first play that resulted in a loss of yards for the Rams on a running play to the right. The next time it happened it prevented Nick Foles from stepping up in the pocket and resulted in a bad throw and...
Hello Perrish Cox
...a bad throw and an interception. It is amazing just how much difference one week makes. The defense came out and suffocated the St. Louis Rams without bringing a blitz. Obviously the biggest play was the pick six where Nick Foles was looking for Kenny Britt and instead found Perrish Cox for 6.
A small note here, but on the second drive Angelo Blackson, Karl Kug and Toby Johnson were all out on the field for the first three plays. Not for nothing, but there wasn't much of a drop off either, Brian Orakpo and Derrick Morgan stayed on with this unit.