Ryan Tannehill Has Played His Way Back to Relevance

Ryan Phillips
Ryan Tannehill leading the Tennessee Titans against the Oakland Raiders
Ryan Tannehill leading the Tennessee Titans against the Oakland Raiders / Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Ryan Tannehill's rebirth in Tennessee appears complete, as the 31-year-old quarterback has likely earned the Titans' starting job for the foreseeable future.

The former Dolphins' franchise quarterback was an afterthought entering the 2019 season as Marcus Mariota's backup. Since he took over as Tennessee's starter in Week 7, Tannehill has been one of the league's most efficient quarterbacks.

Tannehill current ranks second in the NFL in completion percentage (73.4 percent) and first in yards per attempt (9.8). He has thrown 15 touchdown passes against just five interceptions, and entered Week 14 with the best passer rating in the league (113.9).

How good has Tannehill been? The Titans are now reportedly considering giving him a new contract instead of just relying on the franchise tag to retain him:

While Tennessee's offense relies heavily on the run -- Derrick Henry has been bulldozing folks all season -- Tannehill's contribution has elevated the team to a new level. He has also greatly aided the development of rookie receiver A.J. Brown, who looks like a really good young wideout. The veteran quarterback found Brown for a big play on Sunday:

The biggest difference between Tannehill and Mariota is the decisiveness the veteran has shown. He makes quick decisions and steps into throws confidently, where it looked like Mariota was overthinking everything. More importantly, Tannehill guides the team to wins. The Titans are 6-1 since Tannehill was officially named the team's starting quarterback and they've now won four in a row. Buried earlier in the season, Tennessee is now just outside the AFC playoff picture.

Tannehill has stepped up and proven himself this season and it will likely lead to a lucrative contract this offseason.