Mar­i­ota ‘ab­so­lutely’ hopes to play vs Colts

West Hawaii Today - - Sports - BY TERESA M. WALKER

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Ti­tans quar­ter­back Mar­cus Mar­i­ota says he feels a lot bet­ter than a week ago. Whether he plays Mon­day night against the Indianapolis Colts will de­pend on how much Mar­i­ota can move around.

The quar­ter­back him­self has a quick an­swer on how good he feels his chances re­ally are.

“Ab­so­lutely,” Mar­i­ota said Wednesday.

Mar­i­ota did not play last week in a 16-10 loss to Mi­ami be­cause of a strained left ham­string. The Ti­tans (2-3) prac­ticed Wednesday, tak­ing ad­van­tage of an ex­tra day.

“I was able to par­tic­i­pate in a good amount of prac­tice,” Mar­i­ota said. “I wasn’t able to do ev­ery­thing, but be­ing able to be out here with the guys, do­ing some stuff, was big.”

Coach Mike Mu­larkey says he’s hop­ing Mar­i­ota can play and al­ways sup­ports what his quar­ter­back thinks. Mar­i­ota do­ing more Wednesday than he did last week was a good sign, ac­cord­ing to Mu­larkey. The real key will be Mar­i­ota’s mo­bil­ity.

“He’s got to be able to move around re­ally pretty good to be able to play and not put him­self in a po­si­tion that he’s going to re-in­jure him­self,” Mu­larkey said. “He’s got to show that by the end of the week.”

The Ti­tans cer­tainly could use their starter back try­ing to snap a two-game skid. If Mar­i­ota plays, it would be the third prime­time game of his ca­reer. The first two were Thursday night games against Jack­sonville, and Mar­i­ota has the third-high­est passer rat­ing in prime-time games for quar­ter­backs with at least two games played since 2015 at 108.9.

Mar­i­ota has com­pleted 70.2 per­cent of his passes for 501 yards un­der the lights with two touch­down passes and no in­ter­cep­tions. He also ran for a 23-yard TD in his first prime-time game at Jack­sonville in 2015.

From Hawaii, he said grow­ing up he wanted to play on Mon­day night and hopes he gets that op­por­tu­nity in his first chance in the NFL.

“Ob­vi­ously, it’s fun to play on prime time, it’s fun to do those things,” Mar­i­ota said. “The at­mos­phere is going to be great. To get up for the game, you take it just as any other game. You get ready and pre­pare and just go out and play ball.”

First, Mar­i­ota has to con­tinue im­prov­ing each day.

“Hope­fully to­ward the end of the week, I get more on my plate and I feel com­fort­able to try and play on Mon­day,” Mar­i­ota said.

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