NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – While Marcus Mariota dressed up for a Tennessee Titans practice for the first time Friday, there’s a rivalry brewing–even in families–about whether he should start instead of last year’s rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger.
Although Mariota has already been given the title of starter by the team’s coach, Mettenberger is upping the chatter by telling national media he’ll “fight to the death” to be first team quarterback.
Mariota was having none of it Friday as he fielded questions from national and local media alike at the Titan’s practice facility in north Nashville.
“Competition will drive this team,” said Mariota.”You know I have gotten to know Zach. Zach is an awesome guy, and as process goes on, I think we will be able to push each other and make this team better.”
A father and son at the Titans pro-shop seemed to feel the same way Friday.
Alex Collins of Franklin was buying the white-hot selling Mariota jersey.
His father, Chuck, was about to buy a Mettenberger jersey.
“I have to support the franchise decision,” said Alex, while holding the Mariota jersey. “I like what he did in college and we’ll see if that translates into the NFL.”
His father Chuck was not backing down a bit from Mettenberger, who started several games last year.
“He should be given the same chance ‘Mett’ is,” Chuck said as he purchased the Mettenberger jersey. “Let’s let it play out on the field. Let’s not hand it to him.”
The two said they have been having this family discussion daily since Mariota was drafted.