Will Marcus Mariota continue to live up to the hype?
The expectations that come along with being the second overall pick in the NFL Draft are high and so far, Mariota has met them. The Heisman Trophy winner out of Oregon earned solid reviews through the team’s offseason program as he transitions from running a spread offense in college to taking snaps under center in the NFL. Mariota’s receivers, in particular, have been impressed with the young quarterback’s accuracy, indicating he can be more than just a running threat at the outset. How he performs in pads when facing contact will be his next challenge.
How much of an impact will Dick LeBeau have on the defense?
Ken Whisenhunt brought former Pittsburgh defensive guru Dick LeBeau on board over the offseason to help revamp the Titans’ struggling defense. The team has some nice pieces in defensive tackle Jurell Casey and pass rushers Derrick Morgan and Brian Orakpo, but will LeBeau be able to work the same magic he did in Pittsburgh with a defense that finished 27th overall last season?
Is the offensive line improved?
Longtime left tackle Michael Roos retired. Right tackle Michael Oher was released. That leaves a number of questions along the offensive line that wasn’t very strong to begin with last season. Taylor Lewan will start at left tackle, but the right tackle spot is up for grabs. Third-round pick Jeremiah Poutasi will compete with free-agent signee Byron Bell for the job. At center, sixth-rounder Andy Gallik may push incumbent Brian Schwenke for the starting job. Whoever emerges as the starters will have to improve on last season, when the Tennessee line was rated 28th in the league by Pro Football Focus.
What kind of impact can Dorial Green-Beckham make in his rookie season?
Green-Beckham brings talent and an intriguing skill set, but the second-round pick out of Oklahoma sat out all of last season after transferring from Missouri. Whether he can make an impact as a rookie or will need time to adjust after not playing for over a year will be interesting to see.
Who wins the starting running back job?
The Titans drafted David Cobb out of Minnesota in the fifth round and he’ll push second-year back Bishop Sankey for the starting job. Sankey started nine games last season and was the team’s leading rusher last year with 569 total yards, but he averaged a modest 3.7 yards-per-attempt. The Titans need to get more out of their running game this season to help take some of the pressure off the inexperienced Mariota.