TEN-TB grades: Winston awful in matchup with Mariota
Here are the top takeaways and highest-graded players from Sunday’s TEN-TB game:
– In the battle of the top two 2015 draft picks, QB Marcus Mariota (+1.6) out-performed his rookie classmate Jameis Winston (-7.8). While Mariota had a perfect passer rating with four touchdowns to three incompletions, he only finished with a +1.8 passing grade. The strength of Mariota’s game against the Buccaneers came from the middle of the field, as he completed eight of his nine targets for 145 yards and three touchdowns. When the Titans face better defenses than the Buccaneers, he will have to challenge them outside of the numbers to succeed.
– New Titans defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau was able to confuse and put pressure on rookie QB Jameis Winston (-7.8), forcing two interceptions and a few dropped passes. LeBeau, who is known to give rookie quarterbacks nightmares, produced pressure without frequent blitzing (the Titans only recorded nine blitzes on all of Winston’s 42 drop backs).
– With CB Jason McCourty out, the Titans relied on both CB Coty Sensabaugh (+3.3) and CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson (+2.1) to play as the second and third cornerbacks. Sensabaugh finished last season as PFF’s No. 96-ranked cornerback (out of 108) with a -9.4 overall rating; Wreh-Wilson was No. 104 (-16.2). However, against the Buccaneers passing attack, the pair only gave up a combined three catches on eight targets for 36 yards.
LB Zach Brown (+4.2)
DL Jurrell Casey (+3.6)
CB Coty Sensabaugh (+3.3)
WR Kendall Wright (+2.9)
OLB Brian Orakpo (+2.6)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
– 2015 first overall draft pick Jameis Winston recorded the lowest PFF overall rating in week one for QBs at -7.8. When Winston did not face pressure (22 out of 42 drop backs) he graded out at -0.9; however, when Winston did face pressure, his grade fell to a -5.3, with only five completions on 14 attempts. Expect Winston to see a lot more pressure in the coming weeks.
– To help relieve some of the pressure on Winston, the Buccaneers need to do a better job running the ball. Doug Martin picked up some solid yardage when given the opportunity; however, he did that without the help of his offensive line. The right side of the line, in particular, struggled to open any holes for Martin to hit. On runs that had a point of attack from right guard to right end, the Bucs only gained 15 yards on 7 attempts.
– With Mariota only averaging 2.19 seconds per attempt, the Buccaneers had little chance to muster a pass rush. However, time after time the Bucs pass coverage broke down as they where sucked into thinking that Mariota and the run game posed a larger threat. The Titans only used play action five times; however, they averaged 23 yards per play, compared to 8.6 yards per play when the Titans did not use play action. The very idea of Mariota being a run threat (even though he only had two designed carries) seemed to play tricks in the mind of the Buccaneers linebackers.
DL Clinton McDonald (+2.1)
HB Doug Martin (+1.2)
C Evan Smith (+0.5)
CB Tim Jennings (+0.3)
DL Gerald McCoy (+0.3)