The Titans Might Have A QB Controversy On Their Hands

Ryan Tannehill #17 of the Tennessee Titans jogs off the field after a preseason game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Nissan Stadium on August 20, 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee.
(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)


The Tennessee Titans went out on a limb and selected Malik Willis in the third round of the 2022 NFL Draft.

This was a surprise pick, mostly because Willis was not expected to fall that far.

Despite having Ryan Tannehill the Titans gave Willis a chance.

Now, they might have a QB controversy in the near future.

Willis has performed very well in the preseason and has shown the ability to have success with his arm and legs.

The 34-year-old Tannehill is what he is at this point in his career.

He is limited as a passer and that is why the Titans lean so much on Derrick Henry.

But, Willis has an unknown ceiling.

He was projected by some to be the best QB prospect in this past draft and he has shown flashes of that in the preseason.

While Tannehill will be the undoubted starter in Week 1 that does not mean Willis will not take over at some point.

Willis’ preseason stats included completing 28 of 51 passes for 318 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception.

He also added 14 rushes for 159 yards and one touchdown.

The 54.9% completion percentage is a problem but that is not a surprise for a rookie in his first few games.

His preseason performance even compared favorably to another dual-threat QB.


Willis Scouting Report

At the absolute worst, Willis will be a very effective runner in his first season.

In the run-first offense that Tennessee utilizes he and Henry could present a very formidable duo.

Willis also has more arm strength than Tannehill, which he showed plenty during the preseason.

An interesting idea for the Titans could be to install a Baltimore Ravens type of offense.

The Ravens let Lamar Jackson use his legs more than his arm early in his career until he fully developed as a passer.

Then once they opened up their offense for Jackson he won the league MVP.

Willis may never win league MVP but he will develop as a passer over time and that is all Tennessee can hope for.

Tannehill has led the Titans to the playoffs each of the past four seasons.

With the former first-round pick leading the Titans to three playoff wins in that time.

But, it seems Tannehill will not be able to carry this team to the Super Bowl.

Plus, the loss of A.J. Brown in the offense will make things much more difficult on the QB.

In the first five weeks of the season, the Titans face the Bills, Raiders, and Colts.

They could lose all three of those games and head into their Week 6 bye at 2-3.

That might be the perfect time to make a change at QB.

Willis could make his NFL debut in Week 7 at home against the Colts.

That would make sense if the Titans want to maximize their roster for this upcoming season and see what they have in Willis.

Being a third-round pick, Willis only has a four-year contract.

It would make sense if the Titans get a few seasons out of him as a starter to see if he can be their new franchise QB.

Tannehill must play well early or the chants for Willis will get louder and louder.

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