Mariota appears sharp in new system, Titans fall to Packers

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By GENARO C. ARMAS

The Associated Press

GREEN BAY, Wis. — Marcus Mariota is proving to be a quick study with a new coach installing yet another offensive system for the Tennessee Titans.

Maybe Mike Vrabel will stick around for a while for Tennessee.

The Titans had a memorable opening series in Vrabel’s preseason debut as coach before the Packers pulled away in a matchup of the backups for a 31-17 win Thursday.

“It was cool. I love this team, I do. I love these guys,” Vrabel said about his first time on the sideline leading the Titans.

Mariota was 2-of-3 for 42 yards with a 4-yard scoring pass to Darius Jennings on the opening drive. Mariota also had one carry for 7 yards before leaving after the nine-play series.

It was a nice, if brief, start for Mariota. The Saint Louis School graduate is picking up a new scheme under his third head coach in four seasons.

“I thought we got into rhythm. We were able to go down and score a touchdown, which is always good. And hopefully we can just continue to build off of that,” Mariota said.

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers was one of many Packers starters on the sideline for the game, but backup Brett Hundley showed glimpses of improvement under center, going 9-of-14 for 108 yards and an 8-yard score to running back Jamaal Williams on the drive after Tennessee’s score.

Hundley threw one interception, but also hit Davante Adams for a 48-yard completion.