Former Falcons QB Marcus Mariota finds a new home

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After a forgettable year in Atlanta, former Falcons quarterback Marcus Mariota has signed a one-year deal worth $5 million with the Eagles to be Jalen Hurts’ backup.

The opportunity in Atlanta was to be a stopgap option as the Falcons searched for a franchise signal caller. During his 13 starts, Mariota’s play was tumultuous; there were bright moments and not so bright ones. He threw for 2,219 yards and 15 touchdowns against just nine interceptions on 61.3% passing. Ultimately, he fell out of favor with the coaching staff and was benched for the rookie Desmond Ridder, which came much too late if you ask me.

After learning about his demotion, the veteran seemingly stepped away from the Falcons; a phantom injury ended his season despite never appearing on any injury report. By all accounts, Mariota took his ball and went home.

According to reports, the Falcons informed Mariota of the change on Thursday morning; by Friday, the team learned the veteran planned to step away. Arthur Smith went further to say the injury wasn’t an issue all season and that it was Mariota’s prerogative.

When the Falcons signed Marcus Mariota, he came with a sterling reputation, highly touted for his attitude and leadership, but he acted very uncharacteristically and left Ridder high and dry. There’s surely more to the story, but for what’s available to the public, it sheds a terrible light on the former #2 overall pick.

Still, it doesn’t seem Philadelphia minds; they get a perfect backup for Jalen Hurts. The breakout star of the 2022 campaign dealt with a shoulder injury last season, so it’s not crazy to think we could see Mariota start a game in 2023.

Photographer: Chris Williams/Icon Sportswire

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