The Tennessee Titans shocked a lot of fans in 2016. While the team missed the playoffs, they looked much improved over the team that had finished with one of the worst records in the NFL in back-to-back seasons. Much of the reason for their improvement came due to coaching changes and the maturation of former first round NFL Draft pick Marcus Mariota. At the same time, the reason that the Titans ended up missing the playoffs in 2016 was that Mariota ended his season early with a broken leg.

Mariota’s injury in 2016

When Marcus Mariota broke his leg in the 2016 NFL season, the Tennessee Titans were in strong competition for the Afc South crown.

The Houston Texans were playing strong defensively, but quarterback Brock Osweiler had done little to help the Texans run away with the division. As a matter of fact, Osweiler lost his starting job to Tom Savage and there is every chance that the Titans could have possibly held on to win the division.

The Tennessee Titans and Houston Texans finished the season tied in the AFC South, both teams with a 9-7 record. However, the Texans had the tiebreaker with the better division record. However, what Titans fans see is that they lost to the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars the week that Marcus Mariota fell to injury. While it is not assured that Mariota could have led the team to a victory in that game, he had a better chance than backup Matt Cassel.

Mariota returning to Titans

Marcus Marita is back now and ready to help the Tennessee Titans build off last season’s revival. He still has one of the best tight ends in football in Delanie Walker and has a new weapon in former Denver Broncos wide receiving star Eric Decker. Add in Richard Matthews and a two-headed running attack with DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry, and the Titans look very dangerous offensively in 2017.

After practice last week, Marcus Mariota said that he felt like a little kid again, going out and playing football. Head coach Mike Mularkey said that he is very pleased with his quarterback and looks good so far. The Tennessee Titans have admitted that Mariota has some hurdles to pass, even after passing his physical. They said that he has mental obstacles, mainly focused on not wanting to fall to another injury.

However, Mariota said that while it is tough, there is nowhere he would rather be.

Marcus Marita has a career 93.8 quarterback rating and has thrown for 6.244 yards with 45 touchdowns and only 19 interceptions in his two seasons of NFL action.