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2017 NFL preview: How close is Marcus Mariota to putting Titans over the top?

We’re previewing the NFL heading into training camp, mixing and matching 49ers opponents and other teams. Today, we look at the Tennessee Titans.

NFL training camp gets going in three weeks, and that means the NFL regular season is only two months away. I imagine most of us will be focusing on our San Francisco 49ers during training camp, but it will help to know a little bit about the rest of the league. SB Nation’s 32 NFL sites are putting together basic rundowns of what their team has been up to this offseason.

Each explainer includes free agent additions and departures, trades, draft picks expected to contribute as rookies, biggest offseason addition, biggest storyline, underrated storyline, and notable injuries. The idea is to give you a quick but thorough background on each team. We’ll use these to look at 49ers opponents, but if we have time, I want to try and use all 32 to give us a nice look around the league.

Today, we move on to the Tennessee Titans, courtesy of our friends at Music City Miracles. The 49ers host Tennessee in Week 15.

The Titans rebuilding project took a huge step forward in 2016, and they could be particularly dangerous in 2017. The Titans selected Marcus Mariota with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft. A 3-13 season earned them the top pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. They traded that to the Los Angeles Rams, which netted them two firsts and two seconds. Suffice to say, they’re in solid shape.

The Titans will be looking for Mariota to take another step forward in 2017. They spent a high pick on wide receiver Corey Davis, and added wide receiver Eric Decker in free agency. They’ll join tight end Delanie Walker, wide receivers Rishard Mathews and Tajae Sharpe, and a backfield that includes DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry. There are not many excuses for this offense not to take a step forward.

Notable free agent additions: CB Logan Ryan, S Johnathan Cyprien, AR Eric Decker, NT Sylvester Williams

Notable free agent departures: TE Anthony Fasano

Trades: None

Draft picks expected to contribute as rookies:WR Corey Davis, CB Adoree Jackson, WR Taywan Taylor, TE Jonnu Smith

Biggest offseason addition: Corey Davis- The Titans have never had a true No. 1 receiver. Davis looks to be that guy. He gives the Titans a legitimate deep threat which will open things up for DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry in the run game.

Biggest storyline heading into training camp: Can Marcus Mariota stay healthy? Mariota has proven in his 2 years that he has the talent to be an elite QB in this league, but both seasons have ended early because of injury. If he can stay on the field for all 16 games, the Titans will be a legitimate threat in the AFC.

Notable injuries heading into training camp: Kevin Dodd, the Titans 2nd round pick in 2016, is still recovering from a foot injury that cost him most of the 2016 season. He is supposed to be ready for training camp. We will see.