This post is going to be a bit of a “couch session” for me, so just buckle up. I have been a Titans fan since the inception in 1999. In that time the team has had 1 franchise quarterback, Steve McNair, and his last season in Nashville was 2005(!). That means that for the last 14 years this franchise has been searching for the next guy. 14 years!
To put a little more in perspective, I started this site in 2006. The first game we were live for was the Albert Haynesworth stomp game on October 1st of that year. It was also Vince Young’s first start with the Titans. So while the Colts have basically had two starters, Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck (minus a year for injuries to each guy), the Titans have started Vince Young, Kerry Collins, Matt Hasselbeck, Jake Locker and Marcus Mariota for at least a season. That doesn’t take into account guys like Billy Volek, Matt Mauck (both in 2005), Rusty Smith, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Zach Mettenberger, Charlie Whitehurst, Matt Cassel and Blaine Gabbert who have all started at least 1 game since McNair left. There are teams who have had it worse, but it is a really short list.
I say all of that to give you some perspective on why the daily breakdown of Mariota’s performance in OTAs makes me a little bit crazy. What Marcus does on the field in May, good or bad, really means absolutely nothing about the season he is going to have. I am still in the camp that believes that Mariota can be a franchise guy when healthy and in the right system. That camp has gotten smaller and smaller over the last couple of years. I am still there because I remember the guy that threw 26 touchdowns and only 9 interceptions back in 2016 before he broke his leg. Maybe I am crazy.
Arthur Smith is going to design an offense that gives Mariota a chance to succeed. I think we will see Marcus do just that if he can stay healthy in 2019. That, of course, is the biggest if in the history of the world, but you know what, we aren’t going to know that for a few more months. I know the people that are at practice have a job to do, and there isn’t much more to talk about from these sessions than Mariota. I just think we should all take a step back from the over analysis until we see what he does when the games actually matter.