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The Tennessee Titans' quarterback situation evolved into the position battle no one anticipated. Ryan Tannehill is the solidified No. 1, but who is his No. 2?

This offseason, there were rumblings the Titans had lost faith in former third-round pick Malik Willis. After all, they benched him for a practice squad quarterback with their playoff hopes in the balance last season, and traded up in the 2023 NFL Draft to select Kentucky's Will Levis at No. 33 overall. However, the narrative around Willis has shifted in a major way. Now, it's not a question if the Titans will keep Willis on roster, but if he's the backup quarterback entering the regular season. The answer to that question is likely "yes," but another question to ask is "Is he cemented in that spot?"

Willis has made tremendous strides in the offseason. That was something noted by every reporter who attended minicamp and training camp, and then, Willis was able to showcase his improvements to the world in the preseason. We got a great look at Willis over the last two weeks, as he played just about every snap in Week 2 vs. the Minnesota Vikings and in Week 3 vs. the New England Patriots. However, these were different games.

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In Minnesota, Willis completed just 10 of 17 passes for 85 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He had a bad misfire downfield to Nick Westbrook-Ikhine, was hesitant to pull the trigger on wide open receivers and made more of an impact with his legs -- racking up 91 rushing yards. Out of the 10 passing completions he had, just three had more than five air yards. Against the Patriots, however, we got a better look at Willis as a passer -- as a quarterback if you will.

The second-year signal-caller completed 15 of 20 passes for 211 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. It was an absolute roller coaster of a performance. After each interception he threw, Willis rebounded with a 10-play drive to set his offense up with the opportunity to score points. He made plays that surprised you, in both a positive way, and negative way. 

"Love the way that he competed. Loved it," Titans head coach Mike Vrabel said after the game. "Gotta eliminate the mistakes. I think that the one there to Josh (Whyle), I thought that the protection kind of dictated that throw and miss, and then the other one, you just have to make a better decision. But love what he was able to do after that and just competed and finished and kept his eyes downfield. Just gotta take care of the football."

There's no arguing that Willis has made strides as an NFL quarterback, but he is very much still learning the position. At times, he's looked decisive and in control. Other times, he was hesitant to pull the trigger or just made what were bad decisions. 

So, where do we go from here? It seems like everyone is searching for finality on this backup quarterback battle with the preseason wrapped up, which brings me to my main point: I don't think the quarterback battle is over.

Who says this quarterback battle can't continue into the regular season? Not on Sundays, but on the practice field. Something thought about by the coaching staff while the Titans go through the year. That's what I think is going to happen. 

The Titans traded up and drafted Levis for a reason. They didn't get a great look at him in the preseason, as he completed 9 of 14 passes for 85 yards and one interception against the Chicago Bears in Week 1. Tennessee had a higher grade on Levis as a prospect than Willis, most likely due to his experience in that pro style offense. Is he as good or better than Willis at this very moment in the last week of August? Probably not, but Levis is not doomed to QB3 in 2023.

If Tannehill goes down with an injury or has to take a series off in Week 1 vs. the New Orleans Saints, it would be Willis who comes in. But what if something happens to Tannehill in Week 10? Who is coming off the bench?

Just because the preseason is over, that doesn't mean this next depth chart is finalized through January. Position battles aren't done, and Tennessee didn't get a great look at Levis. Wills will need to continue to battle on the practice field, and that's something he's very aware of.