The scrutiny on his NFL talent will begin in full as Oregon Ducks QB Marcus Mariota declares for the NFL draft.
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Oregon Ducks QB Marcus Mariota is going to enter the NFL, according to a Tweet from NFL Insider Chris Mortensen.
Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota will announce today that he is indeed turning pro, eligible for 2015 NFL draft, per sources.
— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) January 14, 2015
Mariota, the 2014 Heisman Trophy winner, lost the College Football Championship against the Ohio State Buckeyes, 42-20. He lead the NCAA in passer rating and total TDs. Prior to the game NFL analysts compared Mariota as a prospect to such elite QBs as Packers QB Aaron Rodgers or Colts QB Andrew Luck. However, after the game where Mariota’s arm was underwhelming, he drew more comparisons to Chiefs QB Alex Smith.
Mariota finished the game with 333 passing yards with two touchdowns and one interception and rushed for another 39 yards – a rather underwhelming performance against a defense with NFL-caliber talent.
Following the College Football Championship, Mariota initially said he was not thinking about the NFL. “That’s the last thing on my mind right now,” Mariota said with a laugh.
Teams that might be interested in Marcus Mariota would be the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tennessee Titans, New York Jets, Chicago Bears and Philadelphia Eagles.