What happened to former Titans second-overall pick?
Who is Marcus Mariota?
Marcus Mariota is from Hawaii. He was born on October 30, 1993. Mariota has always been a football quarterback with a dream to play in the NFL.
Marcus Mariota’s dream came true after playing college football as a quarterback for the University of Oregon. He was drafted second overall in the 2015 Draft. Before we get too far ahead, we need to go over his college career. He had a respectable three-year college career. He started his college career with mediocre stats (2,677 yards, 32 TDs).
He went into year two with decent expectations, and he lived up to those expectations. He had a pretty good season with 3600+ passing yards, and 38 combined TDs from the air and on the ground. He was known as an “Elite” quarterback in some people’s minds.
He came into his JR year with sky-high expectations, and once again he lived up to those expectations. This year he was one of, if not the BEST at his position. He had a whopping 4,500 passing yards, 40+ passing touchdowns, and a crazy 770 rushing yards, and 15 rushing touchdowns! This was the best QB performance we had seen in a while, and he even won the Heisman Trophy! He was projected at number two overall in the draft.
The 2015 Draft rolled around and Marcus was still projected at number two overall in the NFL Draft. The expectations became reality and the Tennessee Titans drafted Marcus Mariota at number two overall, behind Jameis Winston.
Mariota was named the starter almost instantly for the Titans. He started his first NFL game against James Winston’s Buccaneers. Marcus Mariota had a great debut, with over 200 passing yards and four touchdowns. He led his team to a 42-14 victory over the Bucs.
He went onto have a great rest of the year as the Titans starting quarterback with 3,000+ total yards, and 21 total TDs. Mariota’s future looked pretty bright for him after he almost leads the team to the playoffs. Titans fans all loved him. He quickly became the 3rd most sold jersey in the offseason.
His second season also started with an alright game, with once again 200 yards, but to only 2 TDs. The Titans lost that game against the Vikings 25-16. He led the team to the playoffs, at 9-7.
Mariota started his first career playoff game against the Kansas City Chiefs who were 10-6 and led by Alex Smith. Marcus Mariota managed to pull off the victory against them! Tennessee fans finally had hope as they had previously missed the playoffs every season since Steve McNair retired.
Mariota’s next playoffs game however ended in a loss against the 13-3 New England Patriots, led by future Hall of Famer, Tom Brady.
Marcus Mariota looked like a franchise quarterback for the Tennessee Titans. In year three, he didn’t have such a great year, he threw the ball for 3200 yards and 19 touchdowns. Not horrible as he didn’t have many weapons at all, but he did get injured in this season. He had over 300 rushing yards and five rushing TDs.
He still looked promising. The Titans missed the playoffs having another 9-7 season this year. Mariota, however, still gave Titans fans hope, as they had a competent quarterback for the first time in YEARS!
In his fourth year, he was coming to the end of his rookie contract; that means he had to play like he wanted to remain the starter for the Titans. Sadly, he got injured later in the season again and had the worst season of his career to that point. He only threw for 2500 yards, and 11 TDs, and rushed for 350 and two rushing touchdowns. The Tennessee Titans still wanted him to start, and re-signed Mariota to a 4-year, $24,213,974 with a $15,870,164 signing bonus contract that following offseason.
In that same offseason that the Titans re-signed Mariota, the Titans traded a 2019 7th, and 4th round picks to the Dolphins in exchange for QB Ryan Tannehill. Despite that trade, Mariota has still named the Week 1 starter.
That season started very bad for Mariota, as he only threw for 1200 yards and seven TDs in six games. Ryan Tannehill was named the new starter after those games, in week two. Mariota never started another game that season, instead it was Ryan Tannehill.
Tannehill led the Tennessee Titans to the playoffs at 9-7, from the 2-4 start that the Titans were at before he started at QB. They then went on the beat the Patriots in the wild card round of the playoffs and beat the number one seed Ravens as the seventh seed. They, unfortunately, lost to the Chiefs in the AFC Championship.
Mariota was cut from the Titans and the Raiders signed him as the new backup quarterback behind Derek Carr.
Mariota ended his career as a Titans with 13,000 yards, and 76 touchdowns over five seasons. He wasn’t the best QB and not the worst. He was a mediocre QB for the Titans.
He has only started one game with the Raiders (as of 5/28/2021), and he threw for 226 yards and 1 touchdown, showing how much he wants to be a starter. Maybe Marcus Mariota will be named the starter at one point, but by the looks of things now, it might not be soon.
In the end, Mariota was an “okay” quarterback. He helped out the Titans quite a bit in those five seasons he was there, but he wasn’t the best by any means. The current starter (Ryan Tannehill) has already had a much better career in Tennessee than Mariota did, and he is only in his second season.