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#pounditSunday, January 29, 2023

Video: Tua Tagovailoa tried to blow up returner after throwing interception

Tua Tagovailoa tackle

Tua Tagovailoa put in a solid, if unspectacular performance in the Miami Dolphins’ preseason opener. The second-year quarterback went 8-for-12 for 99 yards, with the biggest blemish coming on a bad interception in the end zone.

The interception will probably trouble the Dolphins less than what Tagovailoa did after throwing it. Tagovailoa was picked off in the end zone by Chicago’s Deandre Houston-Carson, who tried for a return. He got out just past his own ten-yard line before he was wrapped up by several Dolphins players. Tagovailoa, clearly wanting to prevent a big return, launched himself into the fray to try to lay out Houston-Carson.

As much as you admire the effort, the Dolphins are not going to love seeing their quarterback throwing his body around like that, especially in a preseason game. The last thing they’d want would be for Tagovailoa to hurt his arm or shoulder trying for a hard-hitting tackle. That’s even more true when you consider that his teammates seemed to have Houston-Carson wrapped up already.

It’s worth noting that coming out of college, Nick Saban picked out self-preservation as one of the key things Tagovailoa needed to work on. Saban was talking about knowing when to get rid of the ball and avoid a hit, but the same principle would apply to this type of play, too.

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