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Malik Willis: Too Soon To Call Him A Bust?

Malik Willis
Is it too soon to call Malik Willis a bust? At what point should we hit the panic button on the Titans’ new quarterback? (Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Malik Willis: Too Soon To Call Him A Bust?

Is it too soon to hit the panic button on Malik Willis? You never want to totally overreact to poor rookie performance, however, when you get benched for Josh Dobbs in the middle of a playoff run… maybe we should talk about it.

The Titans are playing the Cowboys Thursday night and Dobbs is the starter. With Ryan Tannehill out for the year, you would think it was Willis’ job for the rest of the season. Conventional wisdom would tell you just that. The problem is Willis has been so bad that he looks totally unplayable.

I want to share this clip because a local radio guy from Tennessee summed this up pretty well:

I don’t think this guy is wrong. How could you possibly move forward to the 2023 season and have Malik Willis at the top of your depth chart? Can’t do it. There has been zero signs to indicate Willis even belongs in the NFL at this point.

Should we really be surprised? At Auburn, Willis was worse than Nick Marshall who played defensive back. At the predraft events, Willis looked totally lost trying to make plays in the pocket. His accuracy has never been a strong suit either. If Willis was ever going to make it, it sure as hell was never going to happen right away. The only hope we had for Willis was as a long term dynasty play in fantasy because of the rushing ability.

It’s still hard to ignore the surface numbers here and not panic. He’s TERRIBLE. Zero touchdowns and three picks is Nate Peterman level bad. Eight total games and three starts in, Willis has failed to throw for 100 yards in a single game and has a 12.1 QBR. It’s one thing to struggle. It’s another to look unplayable.

Who knows where the Titans go from here? There is still time for Willis. He’s a third round rookie. At the same token, the NFL stands for not for long. Patience runs thin in this league. If Willis doesn’t show some significant improvements soon (it’s hard to be worse) he could be totally out of job. It’s been that bad.

Maybe all of this is harsh but we tried to warn everyone how bad this quarterback draft class was. You were never going to find overnight solutions in the third round. It’s going to be a fascinating offseason in Titan land. Don’t forget about my curse! It might be real.

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