Imagine Life Without Mariota

The Tennessee Titans has their franchise quarterback. So must of us think, What would happen if the Titans were to trade Marcus Mariota? Well franchise quarterbacks are not easy to come by. There are roughly around 7 quarterbacks in the NFL right now that other teams would take in a heart beat. Brady, Rodgers, Wentz, and Smith to name a few. A few up and comers that’s been in the league that has shown promise. Mariota, Goff, Winston, Prescott. 

One of the biggest keys to being a quarterback in the NFL other than your skill and football IQ. Is the scheme in which you are playing in. For example look at Brady, Rodgers, Wentz and Smith. Then even Goff now with McVay and Winston. ( Let’s even throw in the rookie Watson as well. ) They all have head coaches or offensive coordinators that have adjusted their offense around the quarterback. 

Now there are times that head coaches come in to a position that do not adjust their offensive schemes to the quarterback. Why? Possibly because they inherited the quarterback and did not draft one. Could their be a possibility that Mike Mularkey doesn’t want Marcus Mariota? And why wouldn’t you change your scheme to your quarterback? Is it cause he’s to set in his ways and want’s to run his offensive the way he always has? Or could he want another quarterback in the next year or two?

Let’s see what the Titans look like without Marcus. Before Marcus came into the league. Let’s look at 2 years before. In 2013 the Titans quarterback was a mix between Jake Locker and Ryan Fitzpatrick. They totaled 328-533 for a completion percentage of 61.5 for 3,496 yards, 22 touchdowns and 16 interceptions. They ended with a passing offense averaging 218.5 yards a game (21st) And 337 total offense (22nd) Pretty bad right? Before you say their defense was horrible, Total defense was ranked 14th in the NFL. Not great but not horrible either. Ended with a 7-9 record. 

In 2014. One year before Marcus the quarterback was a trio of Jake Locker, Zach Mettenberger, And Charlie Whitehurst. ( HORRIBLE. ) Between the 3 of them. They went 299-513 for a 58.3 completion percentage, 3,412 passing yards, A sad 20 touchdowns and 16 interceptions. Now this season their defense was really bad. Ranked 27th in total defense. 

2015. Marcus rookie season played in only 12 games. He totaled 230-370 for a 62.2 completion percentage, 2,818 yards. ( that’s 4 games less with less than 700 yards difference ) 19 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. Just 1 touchdown less a year before with 3 quarterbacks playing 16 games and 3 touchdowns less in 2013 with Locker and Fitzpatrick at quarterback. 

2016. Marcus gets help with Matthews coming in at wide receiver, And Murray coming in at running back. Marcus went for 276-451 for a 61.2 completion percentage. 3,426 yards and 26 touchdowns with 9 interceptions. ( First year under Mularkey ) 

2017. Mariota has seemed to take a step back. He has gone for 110-176 for a completion of 62.5. Doesn’t seem to bad but he has missed on passes that in 2016 he would’ve made. He has thrown for 1,301 yards and has 4 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. Now why has it seemed like he is taking a step back? 

Now it goes back to my first paragraph, The scheme. He may be throwing it an average of 29 times a game. But he isn’t throwing to many wide receivers. In college he did very well when he had 4 options to throw it too. Rather that be all 4 wide outs, 3 wide outs and 1 tight end or 3 wide outs and 1 running back. But in the scheme Mularkey runs he is throwing a lot to 2 or just 3 options. ( Some fans say a great quarterback will audible out, But what can you audible too that will work with just that many options? )  Now i’m no math genius but 3 wide options to throw it too vs 4 or more defenders doesn’t suit you very well. Especially when the play calling as been less than steller. We have shown a lot of times to run run then pass. And when we pass it’s been in obvious passing downs. Not only is that a big problem, But when our receivers are out running their routes, They are running simple routes and not very creative plays. This has lead to a lot of fans either blaming Marcus for the poor play and others blaming the staff saying they are to vanilla and that their playbook isn’t working in this time frame of the NFL. 

Now let’s go out on a limb and say the Titans do trade Marcus. What would they trade him for? A 1st or maybe 2 1st rounders? Lets just go with a 1st and a 2nd. Just so it doesn’t seem like we are blowing it out of the water. Who would the Titans be after since they would now be in the market for a quarterback. Lamar Jackson? You would be in the same situation as you are with Marcus, Sam Darnold? He has shown regression this season from a year ago. Josh Allen? He has been having struggles all year long. Josh Rosen? Rosen wouldn’t be a bad choice, Has thrown for over 2600 yards, Has 19 touchdowns to 8 interceptions threw 8 games. Maybe Jake Browning from Washington? I think he doesn’t get talked about but has been consistant in his play. Last year having over 62 percent completion, Over 3400 yards passing and 43 touchdowns to 9 interceptions. So far threw 7 games has 68.5 percent completions for 1600 yards and 14 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. Doesn’t have that big wide out nor a great elite tight end either. What about waiting a year and maybe hope for Will Grier? Now Grier will HAVE to bulk up. But he is having a very good year throwing for 66 percent completion, 2400 yards and 26 touchdowns with 5 interceptions. 

Or you know, you could always fire the offensive staff and hire a staff that will adjust it’s scheme to a top 10 possibly top 5 caliber quarterback. I mean even in week 7 vs the Browns, Didn’t have his best game. But still graded to a 84.5 according to PFF. Week 6 graded out to be a 88.5 without the ability to run.

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Why I think Sam Darnold should stay another year at USC

Coming into the 2017 college football season, Sam was talked about being the number 1 pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. Now that talk as died down a bit due to his inability to grow from last year. 

In 2016 Darnold had a very good Sophmore season. He finished with a 67.2 percent completion, 3086 yards 31 touchdowns and 9 interceptions. And a rating of 161. In 2017 he has fallen off, threw 8 games of the season Darnold as 63.5 percent completiton, 2292 yards and 17 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. 

In 2017 Darnold as thrown for at least 1 INT in 7 of his 8 games. Darnold has been trying to force throws in areas of the field that he should not be throwing the ball too. he’s making bad reads when choices are given to him. USC runs a lot of zone read plays where Darnold is allowed to decide whether he should give the ball to his running back or keep it himself. He almost never keeps the ball, so defenses virtually ignore him on those plays. Darnold is also set up with a ton of run/pass option plays, where he can either hand it to the running back or fire the ball to a receiver on a quick throw. He regularly chose to hand the ball off into stacked boxes, or pull the ball back and throw into tight coverage. While he almost never made those mistakes as a redshirt freshman last year, he’s making them routinely this season.Sam Darnold is a phenomenal quarterback with All-Pro upside, but he’s not perfect. That has been on display over the last few weeks as he’s routinely missed open receivers for big plays, forced balls into coverage and failed to build chemistry with receivers other than Deontay Burnett. While USC’s play-calling has left a lot to be desired, Darnold hasn’t consistently risen to the occasion when his team has needed him. This is why I’m saying he should choose to stay another year. Try and develop a little more before entering the NFL Draft. 

Mid-Season Small School Position Rankings: RB

NFL 2011: NFL Draft APR 28

Senior Runningback Rankings

 

1. Chase Edmonds (Fordham)

2. Roc Thomas (Jacksonville State)

3. De’Lance Turner (Alcorn State)

4. Detrez Newsome (Western Carolina)

5. Martez Carter (Grambling State)

6. Jaquan Gardner (Humboldt State)

7. Anthony Philyaw (Howard)

8. Stacy Bedell (Stony Brook)

9. Trenton Cannon (Virginia State)

10. Lemonte Booker (Indiana State)

11. Daouda Sylla (Findlay)

12. Phydell Paris (Black Hills State)

13. Tucker Yinger (Dayton)

14. Chris Jones (Northwestern State)

15. Yahkee Johnson (Hampton)

16. Eugene Bethea (Southeastern Louisiana)

17. Brady Mengarelli (South Dakota State)

18. James Holland Jr (Colgate)

19. Kijana Amous (Stephen F Austin)

20. Harold Cooper (Rhode Island)

 

Mid-Season Position Rankings: QB

NFL 2011: NFL Draft APR 28

 

 

Senior Quarterback Rankings

1. Devante Kincade (Grambling State/Ole Miss)

2. Chris Streveler (South Dakota/Minnesota)

3. Jeremiah Briscoe (Sam Houston State/UAB)

4. Kyle Lauletta (Richmond)

5. Peter Pujals (Holy Cross)

6. Hayden Hildebrand (Central Arkansas)

7. Tanner Garry (Slippery Rock/Youngstown State)

8. Luis Perez (Texas A&M-Commerce)

9. Connor Jessop (Shepherd/Virginia Tech)

10. Bryan Schor (James Madison)

11. Yianni Gavalas (LIU Post/Saint Ansalem)

12. Grant Kraemer (Drake)

13. Jordan Hein (Bemidji State/Northern Iowa)

14. Kevin Anderson (Fordham/Marshall)

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15. Tommy Stuart (Duquesne/Boise State)

16. Chad Kanoff (Princeton)

17. Michael Keir (Cal-PA)

18. Jake Sisson (Edinboro)

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19. Billy Pine (Hartwick)

20. Chas Stallard (Central Oklahoma)

 

 

 

Jaire Alexander and Harold Laundry

 

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Boston College defensive end Harold Landry. One would think that taking on Louisville’s high-powered offense would be a good game to evaluate the edge rusher Landry, but it actually wasn’t. Boston College kept Landry playing containment throughout the game, as they wanted to force Jackson to stay in the pocket. Landry made a few tackles on Jackson in pursuit downfield on designed quarterback runs. Boston College let Jackson pass from clean pockets all game long, and they didn’t allow Landry pin his ears back to rush the passer. Thus, this game shouldn’t hurt or help Landry’s draft stock. Laundry finished the game with 5 total tackles.

 

Alexander

 
Louisville cornerback Jaire Alexander missed a lot of game action this year with a leg injury he sustained in the season opener. Similarly to Landry, this was a bad game to evaluate Alexander as Boston College went heavy with a ground-based offense. In the fourth quarter, Alexander flew into the backfield to make a tackle, but he couldn’t get the back on the ground and that let him escape downfield for a long touchdown run. Shortly later, Alexander came up just short of a leaping interception. Alexander has cover skills for the NFL, and that will be more visible to evaluate in other games in the back half of this season. Alexander finished the day with 3 total tackles.

 

 

2018 Draft Stock Up

Florida Gator DT Taven Bryan: Bryan was amazing against Texas A&M. He looked like a top 15-20 pick, using speed to fire by offensive lineman and his power to shed blocks. In the third quarter, Bryan killed a series for the Aggies. Texas A&M tackled him around the neck to prevent a sack, and that drew a holding penalty that wiped out a 40-yard gain. Bryan blew up the next rushing play. Then, he beat a double team from the guard and tackle, firing between them and using strength to achieve the third-down sack. Shortly later, Bryan added another sack on a third-and-goal to force a field goal. Against Texas A&M, he had seven tackles with 1.5 sacks. Bryan has 20 tackles with four tackles for a loss and three sacks this season. The announcers that game were comparing Bryan with the likes of JJ Watt, But one director of scouting has said he reminds him of Bronce DE Derek Wolfe. ( Who has had a successful career. Bryan can play both DE and DT. But is probably better suite as the five technique.

D.J Clark WR, LSU Tigers: LSU pulled off a huge comeback against Auburn, during which Chark was the star producer. It didn’t start well for Chark as he had a painful mistake. In the first quarter, Auburn cornerback Carlton Davis released Chark running deep down the field, which let Chark get open for a long reception. Davis got lucky that his safety forced a fumble that Davis recovered. After that play, Chark overwhelmed Auburn, starting with Chark spinning after the catch to get down the sideline for 39 yards. Late in the third quarter, Chark made a nice catch downfield for about 20 yards, working back to the ball and securing a leaping grab. In the fourth quarter, Chark came up with a huge play as he took a punt return 75 yards for a touchdown to cut Auburn’s lead to 23-21. Shortly later, Chark came up with a huge reception, getting late separation and having the ball fall into him, for a gain of about 40 yards. Chark totaled five receptions for 150 yards versus Auburn. Overall, this tape will help Chark as he showed the speed to separate and make big plays. He also ran some nice routes with impressive ability to get late separation to make receptions

 

Clelin Ferrell DE Clemson: Clemson has a defensive line that is comprised of future first-round picks, and some sources think that Ferrell creates some of the big plays for the other Tigers defensive linemen. The 6-foot-5, 250-pounder has superb speed with athleticism and the ability bend around the corner. On the season, Ferrell has 30 tackles with 7.5 tackles for a loss, 5.5 sacks, one pass batted and one forced fumble. Fellow defensive end Austin Bryant is playing himself into being an early-rounder this year, but Ferrell has done well cleaning up a lot of scrambling quarterbacks running away from Bryant

Maurice Hurst DE Michigan: Hurst had a phenomenal game against Michigan State, dominating at the point of attack. All night, he caused major disruption using a tremendous get-off to fire into the backfield. Hurst wrecked plays from start to finish and led the way for Michigan’s defense to hold the Spartans to 14 points despite the Wolverines’ offense turning the ball over five times. Hurst destroyed a fourth-and-2 play in the fourth quarter to get the ball back for his offense. He showed superb first-step quickness, constantly firing his gap and getting into the backfield. Hurst was so fast off the snap that he was breaking into the backfield while offensive linemen were still getting out of their stances. Against the Spartans, Hurst totaled eight tackles with 2.5 for a loss. This season, he has 29 tackles, 6 for loss, .5 sacks, and 1 forced fumble. 

2018 NFL Draft: Top 20 Small School Prospects (Mid-Season)

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Top 20

1.) Dallas Goedert (South Dakota State TE)

2.) Devante Kincade (Grambling State QB) *Ole Miss transfer

The Grambling State star shows a good blend of arm strength, touch and ball placement. He uses his legs to extend plays, and has the athleticism to hurt you on the ground.

3.) Aaron Stinnie (James Madison OT)

Stinnie, a 6-foot-5, 310-pound senior from Charlottesville, would become an All-CAA defensive lineman as a junior and a preseason FCS All-American as a senior. He accomplished that as an offensive lineman. NFL organizations are scouting Stinnie because of his blend of size and agility.

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4.) Nick DeLuca (North Dakota State LB)

DeLuca has been a mainstay for the Bison throughout his career. His size and instincts have many NFL teams interested.

 

5.) Tremon Smith (Central Arkansas CB)

Smith has the size that NFL teams covet at the cornerback position, and has developed into a lockdown player at the FCS level. He’s a large part of UCA’s success this year.

6.) Darius Jackson (Jacksonville State DE)

An unstoppable force for the Gamecocks, Jackson has the athleticism and ridiculous first step to make some waves at the next level. Routinely beats chips and double teams to apply pressure on the opposing signal callers.

7.) Jake Wieneke (South Dakota State WR)

8.) Marcus Martin (Slippery Rock DE)

“I don’t know that there are many of him at any level,” said Cal (Pa.) coach Gary Dunn, whose team lost to Slippery Rock, 47-44, in overtime Saturday, with Martin making a key sack in overtime. “He’s the total package. He plays nonstop.”

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9.) Brett Taylor (Western Illinois LB)

Taylor has been an absolute force for Western Illinois. He has great size and instincts for the position, and a motor that runs hot.

10.) Davontae Harris (Illinois State CB)

11.) Chase Edmonds (Fordham RB)

Edmonds is the most prolific runner in the FCS right now. He has the speed, burst and vision to make an NFL roster.

 

12.) Tyshon Mosley (Portland State G) *Utah State transfer

Mosley has been having a very underrated season this year. He generates good drive in the run game, and has the athletic ability to match up with quicker interior defenders.

13.) Charles Holland (Tiffin WR)

14.) Brandon Parker (North Carolina A&T T)

Parker is a highly regarded tackle prospect, and a good blend of size and athleticism. He could be a late round selection in the draft next year.

15.) Max Redfield (IUP S) *Notre Dame transfer

The Notre Dame transfer has played well since stepping on the field for IUP, and his time as a starter for an FBS program will get him looks from NFL organizations.

16.) Mike Basile (Monmouth S)

17) Chris Streveler (South Dakota QB) *Minnesota transfer

Streveler has been making a case for himself this year, leading South Dakota to an undefeated record. He’s a dual threat quarterback and has been racking up some gaudy stats.

18.) Roc Thomas (Jacksonville State RB) *Auburn transfer

Roc Thomas has shown us the ability that had him recruited to Auburn. He has is a homerun threat whenever he touches the ball, and is elusive in the open field.

19.) Sione Teuhema (Southeastern Louisiana DE) *LSU transfer

20.) Jeremiah Briscoe (Sam Houston State QB) *UAB transfer

Briscoe has had ridiculous production throughout his career at Sam Houston State. He can really sling the ball around. He has been highly touted by small school draft media.

 

Honorable mentions:

Travon Blanchard (Texas A&M-Commerce LB/S)

P.J Hall (Sam Houston State DE)

Nate Tanguay (North Dakota State DT)

Jake Krause (Bemidji State G)

Luis Perez (Texas A&M-Commerce QB)

Justin Lea (Jacksonville State G)

Andrew Vollert (Weber State TE)

Ebenezer Ogundeko (Tennessee State DE)

Alex Cappa (Humboldt State T)

Randin Crecilius (Portland State T)

Anthony Ellis (Charleston Southern DE)

Peter Pujals (Holycross QB)

Keon Roman (Kennesaw State S)

Chad Meredith (SEMO DE)

De’Lance Turner (Alcorn State RB)

Justin Watson (Penn WR)

James Okike (Wesley WR)

Ian Park (Slippery Rock G)

Taylor Nikithser (Cal-PA C)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Titans Vs. Colts Preview:

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The Indianapolis Colts come into Nashville Monday night to play the Tennessee Titans. 

The Colts offense vs the Titans defense, T.Y. Hilton vs Logan Ryan: Hilton is the Colts leading wide receiver and after a big game last week vs the 49ers. Hilton went 7 for 9 for a total of 177 yards. (25.3 yards a catch) He has the 4th highest yards per route this season among wide receivers at 2.75, Without Andrew Luck Hilton has continued to have a great season with Jacoby Brissett throwing him the football. I have Logan Ryan matched up against Hilton Monday night, Depending on how Ryan matches up against Hilton will be a key role in Monday nights game. Against Jarvis Landry last week, Ryan did not allow a catch on three targets. Logan Ryan has allowed five catches on eight targets for 60 yards over his last two games. 

Colts backs vs Titans linebackers, In week 5 the Colts used a two-headed rushing attack  featuring veteran Frank Gore who forced three missed tackles on 17 touches, and Marlon Mack the rookie out of South Florida adding a 16-yard run. Mack had the best game of his young career against San Francisco, leading all Week 5 running backs with an amazing 80.2 breakaway percentage and three 15 plus yard runs. The fourth round pick also forced five missed tackles on the day, giving him the second highest elusive rating (222.2) at his position for week 5. Wesley Woodyard and Avery Williamson could be up to the task this week. Both defenders rank inside the top ten linebackers in terms of run stops. Woodyard leads the team with 14 while Williamson has nine. Woodyard ranks 5th at his position in 2017 in run stopping percentage with 11.2 

Demarco Murray vs Colts Edge Defenders, Murray has struggled to say the least this season. Ranking 41st at his position with less than a 60 percent overall grade. In 2016 Murray generated 24 missed tackles through the first 5 weeks of the season. In 2017 he only has 8. Murray has been his best when running to the left side behind (LG) Spain and (LT) Lewan. (Who was a full go at practice recently) Since 2016 he is averaging 5.17 yards per carry to the left side. Simon and Sheard should expect a heavy work load since Murray’s 29 of 56 carries as been to the left side. Sheard is the 2nd best edge defender against the run with a 91.1 run stopping percentage and Simon at 81.2 ranking at 22nd. Murray’s grade week 1 was a 46.5, Week 2 was 40.5, Week 3 was a 82.1, Week 4 was 74.2 and week 5 was a 46.0 

Matthews vs Colts secondary, Matthews much like 2016 has been the Titans top pass catcher. Matthews is ranking 22nd just under a 80 percent overall. He will most likely often be challenged by Colts cornerback Rashaan Melvin this week. Despite being thrown at 37 times this season which ranks him 3rd most of the season, Melvin is allowing 1.06 receiving yards per coverage snap which puts him at 41st out of 78 qualified cornerbacks. His overall grade of 86.3 ranks 10th in the NFL among all corners. 

Walker vs Colts safeties, Walker is playing at a very high level, Catches and yards are some of his highest totals through week 5 in his career. He has yet to get a touchdown so far in 2017. He is 2nd overall according to ProFootballFocus with a 87.6 only behind Rob Gronkowki’s rating of 88.0. Walker could be matched up against the Colts safety Matthias Farely, Who has given up a rate of 1.30 yards per catch this season. Ranking him among the most at his position. 

Titans OLB Orakpo vs Colts Tackle Castonzo, Castonzo who has been very good run blocking in the past has continued his success there boasting the best run blocking grade among tackles in the NFL at 88.0 overall. But this season he is among the middle of pack of tackles when it comes to pass blocking ranking 15th with an 78.7 grade. Orakpo has started the season off really well. Totaling 22 pressures from 128 pass rush snaps, which puts him at a pass rush rating of 13.1 productivity. Which ranks him 9th among edge defenders. 

 

 

Malik Jefferson: LB Texas

When you look at Jefferson you see all of this hype around him as carry over from when he came in highly recruited. But the question is where do you see him dominate games on tape? It’s not on the tape yet. One NFC scouting director says. The scouting director does have a good point. If you look at all of the data to check on Jefferson’s production and the most glaring issue is his lack of tackles. Jefferson has good size and great athleticism with a good motor, but managed just 121 tackles over his first two seasons. He has as three games in his career with double-digit tackles, ( two of them so far in his Junior year) and his “impact” production (game-changing plays like tackles for loss, fumbles forced and recovered, INTs) is very modest.

On tape, Jefferson is lacking in instincts and anticipation, which could tell you why he has lower tackle numbers. The flip side of things Jefferson has 9 career sacks all of which coming in his first two seasons and if new defensive. We could see him become a dangerous blitzer if put in the right situation. Regardless, Jefferson does need for his production and impact to more closely match his talent and athleticism.

In the game against Maryland Jefferson made some nice plays and good tackles. He finished plays, showed a good motor, And showed good sideline to sideline speed. He finished the game with 9 total tackles. ( 5 Solo and 4 assisted tackles.) He did have some bad plays where he took the wrong angle and it allowed the runner to get 4 to 8 yards on the ground. Most of his bad angles were against option read plays.

I do think he needs a little more work reading the offense. But I like his tackling ability and that he doesn’t miss a lot of tackle. Shows good speed and ability to split 2 blockers.