Mariota credits Browns QB Coach

Titans quarterback says Kevin O'Connell helped with transition to the NFL.

BEREA, Ohio—Prior to the NFL Draft, there were a lot of rumors that the Browns would go ‘all in’ to trade up to draft quarterback Marcus Mariota.

However, that speculation ended quickly as the Titans drafted Mariota with the second overall pick after quarterback Jameis Winston went to Tampa Bay with the first pick. Mariota is taking part in the NFL’s rookie symposium in Berea this week.

Mariota said he didn’t have any contact with the Browns once the draft began.

“There were a lot of scenarios, but I never I had any contact with the Browns,” Mariota said Tuesday.

One of the reasons Mariota was tied to the Browns was because he was trained for the NFL Combine by current Browns quarterback coach Kevin O’Connell, who tutored Mariota before officially joining the Browns.

“(O’Connell) did a great job for me,” Mariota said. “He provided me with information in helping me to make my transition a little easier. He helped me with my 3-,5-,7- step drops and it has helped my transition (to the NFL) go better.”

Mariota is expected to challenge for the starting position in Tennessee and said he’s ready for the challenges of his rookie season with the Titans and isn’t comparing himself to the rookie quarterbacks from a year ago that started and had success such as Derek Carr and Teddy Bridgewater.

“I really don’t try to compare myself to other players,” Mariota said. “I just want to do my best. Other people’s opinions don’t bother me, I’m just doing my best to learn the offense.”

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