The Jameis Winston vs. Marcus Mariota debate will continue to rage as the two quarterbacks enter their second seasons.
NFL Network did a poll asking which QB will have the better season in 2016.
The results: Mariota received 54 percent of the votes. Winston received 46 percent.
The two will be forever linked. Both won a Heisman trophy – Winston in 2013 while leading Florida State to an undefeated/national title-winning season and Mariota the next year as Oregon beat FSU in the semifinals before losing to Ohio State in the title game – and were the selected with the top two picks of the 2015 draft, Winston No. 1 by the Buccaneers followed by Mariota to the Titans.
After Mariota had a surreal start, outplaying Winston in their head-to-head matchup in the season opener and pulling in a perfect QB rating, Winston went on to win the rookie of the year (fan vote) and be named to the Pro Bowl while Mariota’s season ended early because of a knee injury. He played in 12 games.
Here are their numbers:
Winston: 312 of 535, 58.3%, 4,042 yds, 22 TDs, 15 ints, 84.2 rating.
Mariota: 230 of 370, 62.2%, 2,818 yds, 19 TDs, 10 ints, 91.5 rating.
Mariota clearly has the quicker start with four TD passes (all in the first half) in the opener while Winston threw two scoring passes and two interceptions, including a pick six on his first NFL attempt. But neither had a great supporting cast. Both team’s offensive lines and receivers were among the worst in football.