Titans plan to play Josh Dobbs at QB Thursday night vs. Cowboys

Josh DobbsNASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Titans plan to start veteran Josh Dobbs at quarterback, changing course Thursday night against the Dallas Cowboys.

Justin Melo has the report first  

Dobbs signed with the Titans from Detroit’s practice squad on Dec. 21, three days after Ryan Tannehill seriously reinjured his right ankle leaving him highly unlikely to play again this season.

Dobbs served as Malik Willis’ backup in Sunday’s 19-14 loss to the Houston Texans when Willis posted a 34.5 passer rating and ran for 43 yards with a touchdown.

Originally a fourth-round pick out of Tennessee in 2017, he played in six games with the Pittsburgh Steelers, five in 2018 and one in 2020. He’s also been with the Jaguars and the Browns.

Willis has started three games for the injured Tannehill, completing just 50.8 percent of his passes with three interceptions and no touchdowns for a 42.8 passer rating, less than half Tannehill’s 94.6.

“Yeah, I feel ready, I’m excited,” Dobbs said Tuesday when I asked him about his progress since his arrival in Nashville. “I feel good, it’s been good getting the game plan down.”

Thursday’s game has no playoff implications for the 7-8 Titans, who will go to Jacksonville for their season finale on Jan. 7 or 8 for what amounts to the AFC South championship game.

A Dobbs start can provide the team with evidence as to whether they will be better off with him or Willis against Trevor Lawrence and the surging Jaguars in that game.

“I think (Dobbs) has put a lot of time in, I think he’s been in a lot of different offenses, I think he’s working hard to learn what we are doing and being able to manage the game and understand the operation and all those different things,” Mike Vrabel said.

Todd Downing praised Dobbs’ intelligence.

“You can see why he’s an aeronautical engineer,” he said. “He’s a very, very bright young man and he’s working very hard to pick everything up. There is some familiarity in the system he was in in Cleveland, Kuharsky megaphonecarryover in terminology. I was with coach (Kevin) Stefanski in Minnesota, so I know that there is some same-as. I can try to give Spanish-to-English for him a little bit. And so he’s in-process, he’s working very hard.”

After Tannehill took over for Marcus Mariota during the 2019 season, he started 49 consecutive games for the Titans before he badly sprained his right ankle in an Oct. 3 win over the Colts. That left him unable to play the next two games. He reinjured it on a run against the Chargers on Dec. 18.

Willis and Dobbs trained together some in the offseason.

“Oh, that’s my guy,” Willis said, nodding towards Dobbs’ locker. “Anything I can do to help him get up to speed on the offense or anything he might need, I’m here for.”

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