Las Vegas Raiders
Raiders’ Jon Gruden Impressed by Marcus Mariota
With Derek Carr entrenched in the starting quarterback job with the Las Vegas Raiders, head coach Jon Gruden took some time to heap praise on Carr’s new backup – Marcus Mariota.
Mariota signed with the Raiders during free agency, following his departure from the Tennessee Titans, where he lost his starting quarterback gig to Ryan Tannehill during the 2019 regular season.
“He’s interesting,” Gruden said, according to ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez. “He took off a couple times today and it really fired me up. He’s been hurt, but looks like the ankle really turned a corner. He’s a dazzling playmaker with his feet, and that’s the key to his game.
“I saw glimpses of that today. It’s exciting. Started off slow on 7-on-7 [drills], but [he] picked it up, had a nice day. Had a real nice day.”
Mariota was the second overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, but did not turn into the quarterback that the Titans were hoping they were getting when they drafted him.
Both Carr and Mariota suffered season-ending broken legs on the same day back in Week 16 of the 2016 NFL season.
“It’s like weird, crazy things that link you together,” Carr said.
“I’ll tell you one thing, in our quarterback group you have to compete, and that’s what I do. Anyone that’s around me, all I’m going to do is compete. I’ve had multiple starters in the NFL come in here and be in the same room as me. You can go through the list about who’s started games and who’s been in our quarterback room. It