Marcus Mariota

Atlanta Falcons
Quarterback #8
Atlanta Falcons
Quarterback #8
Photo: Icon Sportswire

Marcus Mariota News

Expected to open season as starter

Mariota is expected to be the Falcons' starting quarterback to start the 2022 regular season, Josh Kendall of the Athletic reports.

Analysis: Mariota signed a two-year contract with the Falcons at the end of March and was the de facto starter with Matt Ryan off to Indianaplis for a third-round pick. However, Desmond Ridder fell to Atlanta in the third round of the 2022 NFL Draft, sparking speculation that perhaps the rookie could compete for the No. 1 spot, but Falcons head coach Arthur Smith said after the draft, "with Marcus being the veteran, that's the way it'll go for now." Even with the loss of Calvin Ridley (suspension), Mariota will likely have strong expectations in his first season with Atlanta after they drafted pass catchers with top-10 overall picks in back-to-back years, but the Falcons' offense now features a trio of dynamic playmakers in Drake London, Kyle Pitts and Cordarrelle Patterson.

May 2, 2022 9:30 AM EST

Replacing Matt Ryan in Atlanta

Mariota is signing a two-year contract with the Falcons, Michael Rothstein of reports.

Analysis: The contract was announced about one hour after the Falcons reached an agreement to trade Matt Ryan to Indianapolis for a third-round pick. Mariota thus stands a good chance to be Atlanta's Week 1 starter, though it won't come as much of a surprise if the team adds rookie competition during the upcoming NFL Draft. The 28-year-old QB reunites with Falcons coach Arthur Smith, who was the TEs coach in Tennessee throughout most of Mariota's time there. Smith's first year as offensive coordinator was 2019, the season in which Mariota was benched for Ryan Tannehill after Week 6. After two years with the Raiders in a backup role, Mariota joins a rebuilding Atlanta team that doesn't offer much pass-catching talent beyond second-year tight end Kyle Pitts.

Mar 21, 2022 12:46 PM EST

Gets season-high five snaps Week 17

Mariota played five snaps on offense Sunday in the Raiders' 23-20 win over the Colts, throwing an incompletion on his lone pass attempt and carrying three times for 16 yards.

Analysis: Mariota reclaimed backup quarterback duties from Nathan Peterman as he made his return to the lineup after a one-game absence while he was on the reserve/COVID-19 list due to a positive test for the virus. Though he was unable to connect on a deep shot to wideout Hunter Renfrow, Mariota's mobility provided an added dimension to the Las Vegas offense. Expect him to have a small role on offense in this weekend's regular-season finale against the Chargers.

Jan 4, 2022 8:39 AM EST

Activated by Raiders

The Raiders activated Mariota (undisclosed) from the reserve/COVID-19 list Friday.

Analysis: Mariota spent five days on the reserve/COVID-19 list, but he'll be able to rejoin the team ahead of Sunday's game against the Colts. He'll serve as the No. 2 quarterback behind Derek Carr in Week 17.

Dec 31, 2021 1:54 PM EST

Placed on COVID list

Mariota has been placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list.

Analysis: In a corresponding move, the Raiders elevated Nathan Peterman from their practice squad to back up Derek Carr in Week 16. Mariota will thus be unavailable to serve as the Raiders' No. 2 QB until he clears the NFL's COVID protocols.

Dec 26, 2021 9:25 AM EST

Comes off IR

Mariota (quadriceps) was activated off injured reserve Saturday, Doug Kyed of Pro Football Focus reports.

Analysis: Mariota returned to practice this week prompting his return. The Raiders had hinted the mobile quarterback would be used in a number of sub packages designed specifically for him earlier this year, but the resignation of coach Jon Gruden could complicate that notion. Expect Mariota to assume the backup job behind Derek Carr.

Oct 16, 2021 12:19 PM EST

Back at practice Wednesday

Mariota (quadriceps) was designated to return to from injured reserve Wednesday, Paul Gutierrez of reports.

Analysis: Mariota has returned to practice as expected this week, opening a 21-day window for him to be activated from injured reserve. It's unclear if the 27-year-old will be available for Sunday's game at Denver, but he should rejoin the active roster soon if he avoids any setbacks.

Oct 13, 2021 2:59 PM EST

Nearing return to practice

Coach Jon Gruden believes Mariota (quadriceps) will return to practice this week, Adam Hill of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.

Analysis: Mariota has spent the first five weeks of the season on injured reserve with the quadriceps issue, but he's apparently close to receiving the return designation and taking the practice field. It remains to be seen whether the 27-year-old is back in time to suit up for Sunday's matchup with the Broncos, but he appears to be in the final stages of his recovery.

Oct 11, 2021 3:08 PM EST

Moved to IR

Mariota was placed on injured reserve Saturday, Field Yates of ESPN reports.

Analysis: It's not a surprising development given Mariota was expected to miss multiple weeks after aggravating a quadriceps injury in Monday's overtime win over the Ravens. The 2015 first-round pick was essentially a gadget player to begin the season, but the designation means Nathan Peterson will be the top backup behind starter Derek Carr.

Sep 18, 2021 2:05 PM EST

Facing multi-week absence

The Raiders expect Mariota to miss multiple weeks after he aggravated an existing quadriceps injury in Monday's 33-27 overtime win over the Ravens, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: Mariota picked up the injury on a 31-yard run on what proved to be his lone play of the game in the season opener. While Derek Carr is secure as Las Vegas' No. 1 quarterback, head coach Jon Gruden had planned to make use of Mariota's running ability in a few packages per game, so the signal-caller's expected absence will rob the Raiders of a dynamic weapon. Nathan Peterson will step in as the top understudy to Carr for however long Mariota is sidelined.

Sep 16, 2021 6:30 AM EST

Did not practice Wednesday

Mariota (quadriceps) missed practice Wednesday, Paul Gutierrez of reports.

Analysis: Mariota injured his quadriceps in his only snap in Monday's season-opening win over the Ravens. The quarterback was able to run for a big gain early in the game which resulted in his injury. If Mariota is unable to play Sunday against the Steelers, expect Nathan Peterman to takeover as Derek Carr's backup.

Sep 15, 2021 6:33 PM EST

Aggravates quad injury in opener

Raiders head coach Jon Gruden said Mariota aggravated a strained quadriceps tendon during his 31-yard run in the first quarter of Monday's 33-27 overtime win over the Ravens, Adam Hill of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.

Analysis: Mariota created a big gain with his legs on his lone play of the day, and Gruden suggested the quarterback likely would have been featured in a few more packages over the course of the game had he not suffered the injury. The Raiders aren't yet aware of the extent of Mariota's injury, but Gruden said he fears the No. 2 signal-caller could be headed for a long-term absence after the quad issue kept him sidelined for the entire preseason, per Vic Tafur of The Athletic. If Mariota isn't available for the Raiders' Week 2 game in Pittsburgh and beyond, Nathan Peterson would serve as the backup to starter Derek Carr.

Sep 14, 2021 1:57 PM EST

Absent from injury report

Mariota (quadriceps) isn't listed on Thursday's injury report ahead of Monday's matchup against the Ravens.

Analysis: Mariota was held out during the preseason since the team wanted him to fully recover from a quad strain, but he appears to be back to 100 percent ahead of the season opener. He'll serve as the top backup to Derek Carr in 2021.

Sep 9, 2021 3:33 PM EST

Won't play in preseason finale

Coach Jon Gruden doesn't want to play Mariota in Sunday's preseason finale because he has not fully recovered from his quad injury, Paul Gutierrez of reports.

Analysis: Despite being cleared to play, Gruden is hesitant to throw Mariota -- due to his play style -- into preseason action until he is 100 percent recovered. The Oregon product doesn't appear to have suffered a setback, but rather the Raiders are just treating their backup quarterback's injury with an abundance of caution. In his only appearance last season, Mariota threw for 226 yards and ran for 88 more, while scoring two total touchdowns. In his absence, Nathan Peterman is expected to play the entirety of Sunday's contest.

Aug 27, 2021 1:21 PM EST

Sits due to quad strain

Mariota didn't play in Saturday's 17-16 preseason win over the Rams due to a quadriceps strain, Paul Gutierrez of reports.

Analysis: Though Mariota dressed for the contest and was expected to make his preseason debut, Raiders head coach Jon Gruden said after the game that the quarterback was "just not ready to go" while he works back from a quad strain. Fortunately for Mariota, he's not believed to be dealing with a major setback and was still available in an emergency Saturday, so he doesn't appear at risk of being sidelined to begin the regular season. Gruden remains hopeful Mariota will be ready to go for the preseason finale Aug. 29 versus the 49ers.

Aug 22, 2021 6:59 AM EST

Cleared to play Saturday

Mariota (leg) will play Saturday against the Rams, Alex Leatherwood of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Mariota missed the opening preseason tilt, although it seems likely the veteran could have played if necessary given that he warmed up prior to the contest. The Raiders are expected to utilize third-string quarterback Nathan Peterman heavily, with Mariota mixing in minimally along with nominal starter Derek Carr.

Aug 21, 2021 12:34 PM EST

In uniform Saturday

Mariota (leg) is in uniform and warming up in advance of Saturday's preseason opener against the Seahawks, Paul Gutierrez of reports.

Analysis: It's not yet clear if Mariota will see any action Saturday, but his odds of doing so appear far better than they did Thursday when it was reported he could be held out of Saturday's contest. Even if Mariota does see action, it seems unlikely the veteran will see significant snaps in the Raiders' exhibition opener.

Aug 14, 2021 5:37 PM EST

May not play Saturday

Mariota may be unavailable for Saturday's preseason opener against the Seahawks due to leg soreness, Tashan Reed of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Coach Jon Gruden reportedly described Mariota as questionable, while hinting that the backup quarterback may be trending in the wrong direction for Saturday. If Mariota is indeed unable to play Saturday, Nathan Peterman and Case Cookus could see increased opportunities for preseason run.

Aug 12, 2021 11:25 AM EST

Poised to sign re-worked deal

Mariota is expected to sign a re-worked contract with the Raiders, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: Per the report, Mariota is in line to ink a one-year deal with the team worth $3.5 million, with a chance to make up to $8 million, including incentives. There had been speculation that the QB might be on the move, but this agreement will allow Mariota to reprise his role with Las Vegas, behind starter Derek Carr.

Mar 23, 2021 10:54 AM EST

Facing pay cut ultimatum

The Raiders told Mariota he will be released (or traded) if he doesn't accept a pay cut to $3 million for 2021, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: Mariota is scheduled for a non-guaranteed $10.725 million in the second season of his two-year contract. The Raiders aren't likely to find a trade partner, but Mariota should be able to generate interest as a free agent, and he could ultimately get more than $3 million. Any hope for a trade would depend on a contract renegotiation that put Mariota's salary somewhere between the two aforementioned numbers.

Mar 18, 2021 11:13 AM EST

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