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Titans' Malik Willis Touted as 'Definition of Dynamic' by Twitter in Preseason Start

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVAugust 21, 2022

Silas Walker/Getty Images

After an exciting preseason debut, Tennessee Titans quarterback Malik Willis showed more of his upside Saturday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The rookie went 6-of-15 passing for 69 yards and a touchdown in the first half, adding 42 rushing yards on five attempts.

His touchdown came at the end of just a 19-yard drive, though it was enough to show what he can do:

NFL @NFL

That rookie connection! <a href="https://twitter.com/malikwillis?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@malikwillis</a> with a dart to <a href="https://twitter.com/ChigTweets?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ChigTweets</a> for the TD!<br><br>📺: <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TBvsTEN?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#TBvsTEN</a> on <a href="https://twitter.com/nflnetwork?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NFLNetwork</a> (check local listings)<br>📱: Stream on NFL+ <a href="https://t.co/744xIwz6Ts">https://t.co/744xIwz6Ts</a> <a href="https://t.co/nH6HFb3IED">pic.twitter.com/nH6HFb3IED</a>

Mike Cairns @MikeCairns5

Willis is def Titans QB of the future . Been impressed with him.

Tony Jones @Tjonesonthenba

Malik Willis isn’t ready yet, but it’s very very difficult to ignore his natural talent…upside is through the roof….can’t believe we passed on him, man

TURRON DAVENPORT @TDavenport_NFL

Good job by Malik Willis hanging in the pocket and scanning the field. Went through progressions, saw Chig Okonkwo come open and drilled it to him for the TD.

It came after another impressive drive in the second quarter where Willis had his full skill set on display.

NFL @NFL

.<a href="https://twitter.com/malikwillis?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@malikwillis</a> side arm for a 1st down! 💪<br><br>📺: <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TBvsTEN?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#TBvsTEN</a> on <a href="https://twitter.com/nflnetwork?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NFLNetwork</a> (check local listings)<br>📱: Stream on NFL+ <a href="https://t.co/744xIwz6Ts">https://t.co/744xIwz6Ts</a> <a href="https://t.co/k2M0wLKot2">pic.twitter.com/k2M0wLKot2</a>

PewterReport @PewterReport

<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Titans?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Titans</a> QB Willis has been showcasing his dual-threat potential against the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Bucs?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Bucs</a>. Runs of 10 and 25 yards along with an 11-yard completion bring them to the redzone.

David Schiele WTSP @Deacon_Schiele

Malik Willis looked really good on that drive. I see the potential. Titans lead the Bucs, 3-0.

Steve Layman @SteveLayman

<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Titans?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Titans</a> get a 32 yard field goal from Randy Bullock to cap a 13-play, 78-yard drive. There was some really nice stuff there from Willis after some struggles early. Saw a bit of the arm strength, speed and creativity that has people high on him. <a href="https://twitter.com/NC5?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NC5</a>

John Glennon @glennonsports

There are those Willis wheels, good for a 25-yard scramble down right sideline.

The Titans Wire @TheTitansWire

Malik Willis is just built different. Nice 25-yard scramble. This kid is the definition of dynamic.

Willis had struggled with defensive pressure early, taking two sacks and forcing early throws.

The limited time led to notable issues in the passing attack:

John Glennon @glennonsports

<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Titans?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Titans</a>' Willis hasn't had time to hesitate or not hesitate so far. All kinds of pressure.

Niki Lattarulo @NikiLattarulo

Willis looks frazzled in the pocket 🥴

Chad Withrow @TheChadWithrow

Malik Willis looks really uncomfortable. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Titans?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Titans</a>

The Pewter Plank @ThePewterPlank

Buccaneers defense is getting after Willis tonight!

The Titans punted or turned it over on downs in each of the first five series, while Willis' inaccuracy caused issues on third and fourth down.

Even with the inefficiency, there were still plenty of positives from the high-upside quarterback in his second NFL appearance:

TURRON DAVENPORT @TDavenport_NFL

Here's a look at the dots from Malik Willis' completion to start the last offensive series. Good timing from snap to throw, an area for improvement from last week. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Titans?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Titans</a> <a href="https://t.co/avmrIpmOL5">pic.twitter.com/avmrIpmOL5</a>

Jordan Dajani @JordanDajani

Titans go three-and-out again, but Malik Willis was still fun to watch. Hit the defender with the hesi before failing to connect with Carter.

Aaron Freeman @falcfans

Willis almost broke that 4th down run. Dude is ridiculous

The flashes with his arm and legs are enough for Titans fans to dream about a bright future with Willis under center.

The 2022 third-round draft pick totaled 38 rushing yards and a touchdown in his first preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens, adding 107 passing yards on just 11 attempts. The second game allowed him to face more first-team players after getting the start, but he still found a way to shine.

The former Liberty star should get one more chance in Week 3 of the preseason against the Arizona Cardinals.

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