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Titans QB Marcus Mariota: “I Will Definitely Get Better”

Posted Nov 28, 2017

Quarterback Marcus Mariota has won seven of his 10 starts this season, and the Titans have the third-best record in the AFC with five games to play. Mariota isn’t happy with his recent interceptions, however, and has vowed to “get better.”

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Titans are 7-3 with quarterback Marcus Mariota behind center, and with five games left in the regular season, only two AFC teams have a better record.

The Titans are currently tied for first atop the AFC South.

Along the way, Mariota has guided the Titans to four game-winning drives in the fourth quarter or overtime, including one on Sunday as the Titans rallied to beat the Colts, 20-16.

Still, Mariota has been upset with himself after the past two games, when he’s thrown six interceptions.

“Honestly, it’s just coming down to throwing,” Mariota said of the interceptions. “I’m missing – either I’m sailing it or leaving the ball behind. I’ve got to find ways to improve. I’ve got to get better. I can’t keep hurting this team. And I will – I will definitely get better.”

The Titans head into Sunday’s game with the Texans tied with the Jaguars atop the AFC South, with a 7-4 record. In the AFC, only the Patriots and the Steelers, both 9-2, have won more games.

On the season, Mariota has completed 193-of-306 passes for 2,273 yards, with nine touchdowns and 12 interceptions. The interception total is a career-high for Mariota, who threw 10 interceptions in 12 starts as a rookie in 2015, and nine in 15 starts in his second NFL season.

Mariota blamed the two interceptions in Sunday’s win over the Colts on “poor throws,” although Titans coach Mike Mularkey on Monday said one of them was the result of Mariota being under pressure, with a player in his face.

Mularkey said Mariota hasn’t lost confidence, and that’s a good sign.

“Just … watch how he continues to make throws after interceptions,” Mularkey said. “There’s a lot of guys that can’t overcome those and I’ve yet to see him let that affect his play. He made some plays to help us win the game those last two drives (vs Indianapolis), which were critical.”

Mariota said he’s recovered from the hamstring injury he initially suffered on October 1, the team’s first game against the Texans. It forced Mariota to miss the team’s October 8 against the Dolphins, and limited him in the next two weeks in wins over the Colts and Browns.

“Everyone plays with injuries,” Mariota said. “It’s part of it. And you know, I never allow that to be an excuse.”

Against the Colts, Mariota completed 17-of-25 passes for 184 yards, with a touchdown and the two interceptions.

After Sunday’s game, Mariota said he’ll continue to be aggressive. In the first meeting against the Texans, Mariota ran for two touchdowns before sitting out the second half with the injury.

“I trust those guys to make plays, and you can’t be shy as a quarterback,” Mariota said of his teammates. “You’ve got to go out there and make the throws. I never shy away from an opportunity to get a completion. I’ll find ways to get those guys the football.”