Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota has not won a Super Bowl and he has his critics, but what he also has are quality skins on the wall.
Tom Brady, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers are regarded as the top three quarterbacks going right now in the NFL.
Mariota has already beaten two of them.
His rookie year he threw for 371 yards, 4 TDs and 0 INTs in a 34-28 overtime win over Brees and the Saints. Brees wasn’t bad that day throwing for 387 yards and 3 TDs.
Then in 2016 he faced Aaron Rodgers and lit up the Packers for 295 yards, 4 TDs & 0 INT. The Titans won that day beating Green Bay 47-25. Rodgers failed to rally the Pack despite throwing for 371 yards, 2 TDs & 2 INTs.
That’s 2-0 against Brees and Rodgers. That’s 666 yards, 8 TD’s & 0 INT’s.
Against Brady, the numbers are still good, but the record is not. Mariota is 0-2 against the guy many refer to as the Goat losing his rookie year 33-16, but he left that game early after going 3 of 6 for 32 yards.
Then in January 2018, the two met again in round two of the AFC Playoffs. It was a dominant 35-14 Patriots win. The Titans were not good that day and Mariota battled to throw for 254 yards, 2 touchdowns and once again 0 interceptions. Brady was brilliant throwing for 337 yards and 3 TDs.
When facing the best though Mariota has been very, very good. In his 3 full games, he’s thrown for 920 yards, 10 TD’s and 0 INTs.
Does this mean he’s as good or better than those guys? No, it does not, it just means he rises to the magnitude of the challenge and does not wilt in the spotlight.
So, Brady is the last skin for Mariota in this trio of NFL icons. If he’s going to beat him it may take his best effort yet and maybe it will get some of the naysayers off his back.