The Tennessee Titans will come into Pittsburgh for their Thursday Night Football date in Week 9 feeling good, and perhaps with an answer to their quarterback problems.
The Titans, which entered play on Sunday at 2-4 and in last place in the AFC South, said before the game that both 2022 draft pick Malik Willis and 2023 draft pick Will Levis would play in place of injured starter Ryan Tannehill.
There probably won’t be a similar arrangement next week, as Levis was outstanding, throwing four touchdowns in his NFL debut as the Titans beat the Atlanta Falcons, 28-23.
Levis finished 19 of 29 for 238 yards and four touchdowns after coming on in relief of Willis, who never attempted a pass. Levis connected with DeAndrew Hopkins for three of his touchdowns and Nick Westbrook-Ihkine for the fourth.
Levis started his collegiate career at Penn State, but transferred to Kentucky when he couldn’t find playing time behind Sean Clifford. With the Wildcats, Levi threw for 5,232 yards and 46 touchdowns over two seasons, setting him up as one of the top quarterbacks in the 2023 NFL Draft class.
But for unknown reasons, Levis fell out of the first round, landing in Tennessee with the 33rd overall pick in the second round. The Titans had already used a third-round pick on Willis in 2022, but went back to the well with Levis when they saw a more ready-made option to replace the aging Tannehill.
Tannehill is not expected to be out long term as he deals with an ankle injury, but with the 35-year-old in the final year of his contract and Levis obviously representing the future at this point, the veteran might have a hard time getting back into the starting lineup.