One of the domino effects of the Matt Ryan trade may already be taking shape. According to NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo, the Falcons are “expected to pursue” free agent quarterback Marcus Mariota (Twitter link).
[RELATED: Colts, Falcons Complete Ryan Trade]
Mariota, 29, played under Falcons head coach Arthur Smith when he was the offensive coordinator of the Titans. A No. 2 pick of Tennessee in 2015, Mariota spent the first five years of his career there. He compiled a 29-32 record in Nashville, with his best passing season coming in 2016 (3,426 yards, 26 touchdowns).
While the former Oregon Duck was consistent as a Titan, he never developed into the franchise signal-caller he was drafted to become. His days became numbered when Ryan Tannehill took over as the starter midway through the 2019 season. The former Dolphin was a Pro Bowler that season, and has a 30-13 overall record with the Titans.
In 2020, Mariota signed with the Raiders on a two-year deal. He didn’t register a start in his time there, coming onto the field for a total of 89 snaps while the team remained committed to Derek Carr as the starter. With an opening in Atlanta, Mariota would have a clear path back to being a starter.
At present, the Falcons’ QB room consists of Josh Rosen and Feleipe Franks. The former has bounced around to various backup and practice squad roles, while the latter joined the team last year as a UDFA. Mariota would in all likelihood join the team at the top of the depth chart if he were to sign. As a result of trading away Ryan, the team incurred an NFL-record $40.5MM in dead money, but nevertheless created just over $9MM in savings. Those funds could go towards a temporary option such as Mariota, though the team is a strong candidate to use their first round pick (eighth overall) on a quarterback.
10 comments on “Falcons Eyeing Marcus Mariota?”
Good QB to get when you’re trying to tank
I wouldn’t be happy to start him on a team trying to win now, but he deserves another chance to see what he can do as a bridge QB.
Someone explain ATL’s thinking to me…
Why move on from a franchise icon AND eat a ton of dead money AND replace him with a bum?
Why not just let Matt Ryan be (become) that bum instead?
He deserves better
QB2 but could be a solid bridge with ATL’s tight cap
Where too now for Baker?
Falcons aren’t interested, Colts job is taken..
Does he go to the Texans and battle Money Mills?
Or the giants and battle Danny Dimes?
Seahawks don’t have anyone as a certain starter, Drew Lock is hardly exciting Seattle fans.
I think he refused a trade to the Texans though he does have connections to the area since he grew up in Austin and his father played for the University of Houston. He could change his mind.
He could still end up in Atlanta, New Orleans or NY (Giants) since there are question markers with each of their current potential starters. However, Seattle looks like the best option.
I read a while ago it was a done deal. Am I missing something?
Getting a 3rd and tanking this year will get them a shot at a top QB next year. They needed to bottom years ago.