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Mariota injured quad in first quarter

Divisional Round - Tennessee Titans v New England Patriots

FOXBOROUGH, MA - JANUARY 13: Marcus Mariota #8 of the Tennessee Titans carries the ball in the second quarter of the AFC Divisional Playoff game against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on January 13, 2018 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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A mobile quarterback can be an effective weapon against New England’s defense. As long as the mobility doesn’t get him injured.

After Saturday night’s 35-14 loss to the Patriots, Titans coach Mike Mularkey disclosed that quarterback Marcus Mariota suffered a quad injury in the first quarter of the game.
“It had an impact, obviously,” Mularkey told reporters. “Had to get out of some of scheme that we had with him. With our zone scheme.”

Mularkey said the injury happened while Mariota was running with the football, something he is capable of doing incredibly well. When healthy.

Mariota downplayed the injury following the loss.

“Everybody played with something,” Mariota told reporters. He added that he was “embarrassed” by the showing against the No. 1 seed in the AFC.

“You don’t play to come and lose in the divisional playoff,” Mariota said. “You play to go win the whole thing and we just didn’t execute and didn’t make plays, they did and they’re moving on.”

Mariota, who finished the game with four rushing attempts for 37 yards, had two in the first quarter: An 11-yard gain on third and seven and an 11-yard gain later in the same drive on second and 10. He threw a touchdown pass to receiver Corey Davis two plays later.

A hamstring injury seemed to slow Mariota for multiple weeks. If he’s ever going to reach his full potential, the Titans will need to find a way to balance using his physical skills against getting Mariota banged up.