But now that things have settled down on that front, Willis has continued to make progress during Tennessee’s offseason program.
Offensive coordinator Todd Downing told reporters in a Wednesday press conference that the team is working from the ground up with Willis to be thorough in his development. Downing also noted that he’s been encouraged by the way Willis has approached the new scheme.
“He’s coming into a room that’s a comfortable learning environment for him,” Downing said, via Teresa Walker of the Associated Press. “He’s able to ask questions, he’s able to process through some of the new stuff. And I think that what’s great about where Malik’s at is he’s got such a positive demeanor. And he approaches every day joyful to come to work. And that’s the start of it. There’s some things that we’re asking him to do that he’s never done before, and that’s going to, obviously, create a learning curve. I think he’s done a nice job of taking that in stride.”
As a third-round pick, Willis has time to develop behind Tannehill and won’t be rushed to play before he’s ready after spending the last three years of his collegiate career at Liberty. Tennessee also has Logan Woodside at QB as a candidate to back up Tannehill this season.