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#pounditSunday, October 1, 2023

Video: Malik Willis has impressive Titans preseason debut

Malik Willis at the Scouting Combine

Mar 2, 2022; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Liberty Flames quarterback Malik Willis during the NFL Combine at the Indiana Convention Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Malik Willis made the most of his opportunity to start during the Tennessee Titans’ first preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens.

The Titans selected Willis with the 86th overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft in what was not a highly-touted quarterback class. But his performance during Thursday’s game may be a sign that Willis could end up being one of the draft’s biggest steals.

During the second quarter, Willis took a snap on 2nd-and-goal from the seven-yard line and rolled to his right. With multiple Ravens defenders rushing at him, the 23-year-old quickly planted his feet back near the 15-yard line, spun around to the left and made a few defenders miss while sprinting into the end zone for the seven-yard score.

Here’s another angle of Willis’ touchdown.

Willis also looked impressive through the air. He uncorked a deep pass to wide receiver Racey McMath later on in the second quarter, and also completed a Patrick Mahomes-like sidearm throw on the same drive to tight end Tommy Hudson.

Ryan Tannehill, the likely Week 1 starter for Tennessee, did not play. Willis finished his day 6-for-11 with 107 passing yards and no touchdowns or interceptions. He also had four rushes for 21 yards and his lone touchdown.

Willis threw for 2,857 yards, 27 touchdowns and 12 interceptions at Liberty last season. He also rushed for 878 yards and 13 touchdowns. Willis proved that he could be a true dual-threat quarterback in college, and may have taken a first step towards doing the same at the NFL level.


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