Here is your second week of the preseason brain tease.
When is Marcus Mariota better than Tom Brady?
I’ll give you a little extra time to ponder that as I know it is not easy to answer. Times up, here is the answer; tonight.
Now, it does take some special circumstances for Mariota to be considered better than Brady, and tonight we have just the right merge of factors to expect the Tennessee Titans quarterback to come out on top of the Brady matchup. Mariota has already been declared the opening day starter for the Titans by head coach Mike Vrabel. But, after last week, Mariota also knows that behind him is someone capable of challenging him for the starting spot, Ryan Tannehill.
The longtime Miami Dolphins starter is now on the Titans roster, and while the Dolphins have not in recent years been known to score points on or off the field through front office moves, they had paid Tannehill like a franchise QB after his rookie deal was complete. Bright, and with only one year of experience as a college quarterback, the Dolphins knew Tannehill would have a learning curve while adjusting to the position at the pro level.
Problem is, they didn’t think it would take seven years, or ever truly reap the rewards the Miami brass had projected. Now, with a new coach, Adam Gase is off to New York to tutor the Jets, the Dolphins figured it was a good time to cash their chips on Tannehill’s future and look in a new direction. They acquired Josh Rosen from the Arizona Cardinals with hopes the Arizona’s early projections for the former UCLA signal caller were right. Rosen was a first round pick two years ago. The Cardinals cut loose Rosen while spending another first round pick, in fact the first pick in the draft, this year to bring Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray to the desert.
So, what does that leave the Titans with?
Two first round draft choices fighting for the starting role in the Music City. It is true that Mariota may well be the starter when the Titans open their regular season next month against the Detroit Lions, but if that is to be he will have to win the job this summer while Tannehill provides worthy competition.
While these two first rounders battle, the Patriots have to rely on a sixth round choice. That could be a problem for Bill Belichick’s team if it were not that their sixth round choice is the best quarterback to ever play in the NFL, Tom Brady. Tonight, Brady will see some action, maybe as much as the entire first quarter, but long before this game is decided he will be watching from the sidelines while the Titans continue their spirited quarterback duel.
So, why is Mariota better than Brady tonight?
Because Brady will be relieved tonight by two quarterbacks with as much chance of dislodging the Patriots starter as water running upstream. Brady is out there to just get a limited amount of work with his first unit before Brian Hoyer and Jarrett Stidham take the majority of the snaps for New England. Meanwhile, Mariota and Tannehill are looking to impress coaches to win the starting job.
Tonight, competition overcomes talent.
Qoxhi Picks: Tennessee Titans (pk) over New England Patriots