It’s possible Marcus Mariota has made his last appearance for the Tennessee Titans, so where might he land next year?
After the Tennessee Titans acquired Ryan Tannehill in March, there was a strong case for Marcus Mariota as the most vulnerable starting quarterback in the NFL. He lasted almost six games, before Tannehill stepped in last Sunday against the Denver Broncos and finished what would be a shut out loss.
To no one’s surprise, Tannehill was named the starter for Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers on Tuesday. The quarterback situation may be a week-to-week proposition for Titans’ head coach Mike Vrabel, but Mariota’s 9.5 passer rating in Week 6 forced his hand to make a change and Tannehill played reasonably well after he came into the game against the Broncos (13-for-16 for 144 yards with an interception).
Via injuries or simply lackluster play, it was a no-brainer for the Titans to let Mariota play out the fifth year option on his rookie contract this year. It was already a foregone conclusion he’ll be elsewhere next season, and now it’s very possible he’s made his last appearance for the Titans.
Lack of continuity has been a big factor for Mariota, as Arthur Smith became the fourth offensive coordinator he’s had in his career upon a promotion from tight ends coach. Vrabel is also his third head coach. But on the other hand, Mariota simply hasn’t gotten it done.
Only approaching his 26th birthday (Oct. 30), Mariota still carries enough potential that he’ll garner interest as a free agent next March (or as a trade target before the Oct. 29 deadline?).
Looking specifically to next year, here are five potential landing spots for the No. 2 pick in the 2015 draft.
5. Miami Dolphins
The Dolphins are headed for the No. 1 pick in the 2020 draft, under the idea of “Tank for Tua” (Tagovailoa). But there’s been talk of it being a two-year tank job in South Beach, with Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence the ultimate target at the top of the 2021 draft.
In any case, the Dolphins seem set to clean out their quarterback room after the season. Josh Rosen has an uphill climb to declare himself as their guy for the future, and Ryan Fitzpatrick is sure to be elsewhere next year. If it comes down to an opportunity to earn a starting job, and a team that needs a body at quarterback, Mariota and Miami look like a match.