Mariota Making Strides on Field, Not Golf Course


NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota is getting on the same page with his receivers this offseason, including the team's newcomers, veteran Rishard Matthews and rookie Tajae Sharpe.

"I think it's gone well,'' Mariota said after Wednesday's OTA. "They are picking up the offense pretty well. They've made plays throughout the first couple of weeks, and I am looking forward to building that some more."

He's also developing chemistry with his new running backs, DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry.

"It takes a little bit (of time),'' Mariota said. "But at the same time we have a few months to be able to get it down. I think so far it has gone well. A lot of the play-action stuff has worked in practice, and hopefully we can continue to do that. If we can continue to get better at it, it is going to open up a lot of different things for us."

Mariota, heading into his second NFL season, said his confidence continues to grow with those around him, "and if they continue to make plays, I'll have all the confidence in the world in them."

On Wednesday, Mariota talked about the improvements the team has made over the first five days of organized team activities, from adjustments in the offense to cleaning up the penalties.

But he said it's a process, "and we're still ironing out some of the kinks."

He's also focusing on getting rid of the ball faster in Year 2, and said he continues to work on making improvements throwing the deep ball.

"It's something I can always get better at,'' he said.

One thing Mariota's not so confident about: his golf game.

Another new guy – center Ben Jones – recently put him in his place on the golf course.

"(Our relationship) has gone well,'' Mariota said of Jones, who signed with the Titans after playing the past four seasons with the Texans. "We have played golf here and there, he has beaten me in golf. It is nice to just kind of hang out, and learn more about each other and from there take it on the field.

"My center back at Oregon used to beat me (in golf), too. I just need to get better. I am not very good. What do I shoot in 18 (holes)? Hopefully under 100. If it's under 100, it's a good day."

Titans veterans and rookies take the field for Day 5 of OTAs at Saint Thomas Sports Park. (Photos: Gary Glenn, AP)

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