Tennessee Titans quarterback Malik Willis has three starts under his belt and while he has not shown stardom yet, head coach Mike Vrabel says he is improving with each week. Willis has taken over for injured Ryan Tannehill.
Vrabel praised the rookie's ability to get rid of the ball and his decision-making.
"I think just overall just comfort level, being quicker with progression, not holding in, not waiting things out," Vrabel said (via NFL.com). "Knowing that you don't have all day. Being good operationally. I thought he made some good decisions, some really good decisions to pull, when to give it, extend. I thought when he was decisive, he was able to get to some guys. Unfortunately, Chig [Chigoziem Okonkwo] put the one on the ground and dropped it, but he got to [Robert Woods] and he got to Nick [Westbrook-Ikhine] on third and long and he was able to get to Woods in his zone.
Vrabel added that the goal is for Willis to improve, saying, "So, there were some things there that were good, but obviously just want to continue to progress."
Willis is 1-2 with a 50.8 completion percentage with 276 yards, no touchdowns and three interceptions. He is the first quarterback to throw for less than 100 yards in each of his first three starts since the Bucs' Doug Williams in 1978, per NFL Research.
The Titans are currently on a five-game losing streak and are looking to snap it on Thursday night against the Dallas Cowboys prior to their winner-takes-all AFC South showdown against the Jaguars in Week 18.
Vrabel has faith in his quarterback entering as the underdog this week and his abilities as a leader.
"I thought it was good last week. I thought he was into it. I thought he controlled the operation in practice and everything else that we were doing and in meetings and on the field and then ultimately up into the game," Vrabel said. "The leadership and everything that's, you know, whether it's Malik or anybody else, we've always tried to say that there's no restrictions on leadership. We just ask everybody to know what to do and go out and play a certain way and prepare a certain way. When you do that, you're more than welcome to lead anybody you want."