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Will Titans QB Marcus Mariota Benefit from Change?

Posted Jan 15, 2018

Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota will play for his third head coach in 2018. Titans general manager Jon Robinson is confident Mariota will be able to adapt to change.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Marcus Mariota was drafted to guide the franchise to the top, and Titans general manager Jon Robinson remains confident he’s the quarterback to lead the way.

Another coaching change won’t set him back, Robinson said on Monday.

The Titans, in fact, hope it will set him up for greater success.

“Marcus is a pretty resilient guy. He’s a very mentally tough guy,” Robinson said of Mariota. “He takes a lot from the standpoint of ownership in things. I have zero concern in Marcus being able to adapt and learn, and do what’s best to get the offense going.”

Drafted second overall in the 2015 NFL Draft, Mariota will play for his third NFL head coach in 2018. On Monday, the Titans decided to part ways with head coach Mike Mularkey, who replaced Ken Whisenhunt during Mariota’s rookie year.

The team has started the process of finding its next head coach.

“I have a great relationship with Marcus, and I’m sure we’ll talk,” Robinson said. “He is kind of catching his breath right now after a long season and I look forward to chatting with him about the team.”

Mariota’s numbers dipped in 2017 in his second full season under Mularkey and offensive coordinator Terry Robiskie. After throwing for 3,426 yards with 26 touchdowns and nine interceptions in 2016, Mariota threw for 3,232 yards with 13 touchdowns and 15 interceptions in 2017.

While he guided the Titans to another 9-7 record, and into the playoffs, his passer rating dipped from 95.6 to 79.3. Mariota’s passer rating as a rookie was 91.5, when he threw for 2,818 yards with 19 touchdowns in 12 starts.

“Marcus is a really good football player,” Robinson said. “I think if you just look at the statistics (last year), it didn’t quite say that. But I think Marcus made a lot of really good plays for us this year.”

At Monday's press conference, Robinson was asked about the importance of getting a head coach who can maximize the abilities of Mariota.

“I think whoever the head coach is, you want to maximize the abilities of all your players,” Robinson said. “That’s the beauty of this game, it’s a team game. It takes 11 guys. Marcus (Mariota) is certainly an important part of that. The quarterback position is a very important, if not the most important position on the field.”