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#pounditSunday, September 25, 2022

Articles tagged: Tua Tagovailoa

Tua Tagovailoa’s physical therapist raves about QB’s recovery

Tua Tagovailoa
It certainly sounds like Tua Tagovailoa’s long-term prognosis after his recovery from a hip injury couldn’t be much better.

Tagovailoa fractured his hip in November playing for Alabama, which led to widespread speculation that his draft stock could be seriously impacted. The Miami Dolphins took the plunge anyway, and it looks like it might pay off. Renowned physical therapist Kevin Wilk, who has been working with Tagovailoa, stated that the quarterback’s recovery was nothing short of “miraculous.”

“He’s doing miraculously well,” Wilk said, via Safid Deen of the South Florida Sun Sentinel. “The miraculous part is that he healed so well. The second part is, he’s been so well at getting his strength back, which usually takes a long time after something like this.”

Whether Tagovailoa gets the chance to play in 2020 remains to be seen. However, it certainly sounds like his injury recovery could hardly be going better. That’s great news for him long-term, and it’s fantastic for the Dolphins as well.

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Ex-Patriot thinks Brian Flores will not play Tua Tagovailoa as rookie

Tua Tagovailoa

Many are interested in whether Tua Tagovailoa will get the chance to play as a rookie. One former New England Patriot familiar with coach Brian Flores’ methods doesn’t think you should get your hopes up.

Rob Ninkovich, now an ESPN analyst, said on Monday’s edition of “Get Up!” that he does not foresee Flores risking Tagovailoa’s confidence by playing him in 2020.

“I was with Brian Flores for eight years,” Ninkovich said, via Nick Kosko of 247 Sports. “I would not start him right now, immediately. I was with B-Flo for eight years. He’s a very smart coach, a very smart man. He’s not going to try and push him into a position too quickly. If you are forced into a spot where potentially his hip isn’t 100 percent, you want him to be 100 percent healthy. The game of football is very mental. Confidence goes a long way. If you’re pushed out there too soon and you lose a little bit of that vital confidence, it can affect you. I would think Brian Flores has a great plan in place. He’s going to use a veteran quarterback, and hopefully Tua can learn from the veteran quarterback in Ryan Fitzpatrick.”

Indications are that Fitzpatrick will open the season as Miami’s starting quarterback. We’ve heard that the Dolphins might be open to going to Tagovailoa sooner rather than later. Ninkovich seems to think this would be out of character for Flores, but circumstances change.

Ryan Fitzpatrick holding virtual offseason meetings with Tua Tagovailoa

Ryan Fitzpatrick Dolphins

Ryan Fitzpatrick knows that he will eventually have to cede the Miami Dolphins starting quarterback job to Tua Tagovailoa, and he’s trying to make sure his apprentice is as ready as possible.

Fitzpatrick has been having quarterback Zoom meetings with Tagovailoa, and had nothing but praise for the Dolphins’ top draft pick.

“We’ve been going over some of that stuff, and my mind and the process and how I think through it, right or wrong, just to provide some perspective,” Fitzpatrick said, via Joe Schad of the Palm Beach Post. “I’m excited for him to be here. I loved watching him play in college. I think he’s going to be an awesome addition to the team for a long time.”

This kind of mentoring relationship should be immensely helpful for the Dolphins. The 37-year-old Fitzpatrick knows he’s not a long term answer in Miami. He’s willing to go out of his way to ensure that the guy who might be that answer is as prepared as possible.

That said, Fitzpatrick has made it clear that he intends to hold on to his starting job for as long as possible.

Report: Dolphins open to starting Tua Tagovailoa in his rookie season

Tua Tagovailoa

The Miami Dolphins have the perfect bridge quarterback on their roster in Ryan Fitzpatrick, and his presence should allow them to be patient with Tua Tagovailoa. But if Tagovailoa shows he is ready for the big stage, the Dolphins are not going to force him to take a redshirt year.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald was told by a source that Fitzpatrick is likely to begin the 2020 season as the Dolphins’ starter, but the team is not opposed to playing Tagovailoa at some point. Fitzpatrick was impressive last season and has earned the trust of Miami’s coaching staff, but there will obviously be pressure to give Tagovailoa a shot if Fitzpatrick struggles at all.

As Jackson notes, the shortened offseason will work against Tagovailoa. The No. 5 overall pick has only been able to take part in virtual workouts, so there’s no way he will be as prepared as a rookie quarterback would be in a normal offseason.

Tagovailoa had hip surgery just six months ago, so that could also be a factor in whether or not the Dolphins choose to give him playing time. While he appears to be fully recovered, that is another risk to consider.

Fitzpatrick has every intention of fighting for the starting job, but he has also gone out of his way to mentor Tagovailoa already. He should be a great asset for the Dolphins while they try to groom their next franchise quarterback.

Ryan Fitzpatrick not giving up starting job to Tua Tagovailoa without a fight

Ryan Fitzpatrick Dolphins

Many people view Tua Tagovailoa taking over the Miami Dolphins’ starting quarterback job as an inevitability. Ryan Fitzpatrick is doing what he can to put that likelihood on hold.

Fitzpatrick spoke with reporters on Thursday and said he wouldn’t give up the starting job without a fight.

“I’m as competitive as they come,” Fitzpatrick said, via’s Steve Wyche. “I want to go out there and start. I know there are a lot of forces that go into it from all kinds of different sides. Whether than happens or not, who knows?”

Fitzpatrick threw for 20 touchdowns and 13 interceptions last season, which was pretty impressive for a team that seemingly was built to lose and had few offensive weapons. He is viewed as a bridge to Tagovailoa. The combination of his experience in the system, the inability of young players to have offseason team activities, and Tua’s hip injury recovery all point to Fitzpatrick getting to open the season as Miami’s starter. From there, how long he hangs on to the job depends on how well he plays, because there is a young, first-round pick lurking whom the fans will want to see. The good news is Fitzpatrick is also acting as a great mentor to Tua as well.

Ryan Fitzpatrick has been mentoring Tua Tagovailoa via Zoom

Ryan Fitzpatrick Dolphins
Ryan Fitzpatrick will be competing for a starting job with Tua Tagovailoa this offseason, but that does not mean the veteran will be unwilling to help the former Alabama star. In fact, the mentoring has already begun.

Fitzpatrick told reporters on Thursday that he “loved watching (Tagovailoa) in college” and has already met with him via Zoom. The 37-year-old says he has been conducting video chats with Tagovailoa, Josh Rosen and Jake Rudock.

Fitzpatrick acknowledged the obvious, which is that his goal is to win the starting job heading into the season. However, he stressed the importance of quarterbacks helping one another and said he is willing to assist Tagovailoa any way he can.

The Dolphins were accused of tanking all offseason last year, but they ended up surprising the league by winning five games. Fitzpatrick was a big reason for that, as he became a steadying presence for the team and threw for 3,529 yards, 20 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. Tagovailoa has already become wildly popular with the fans, and the Dolphins would love if he did enough to win the Week 1 starting job. If he can’t, Fitzpatrick is the perfect bridge quarterback.

Ryan Fitzpatrick says he is Tua Tagovailoa’s ‘biggest cheerleader’

Ryan Fitzpatrick Dolphins

Ryan Fitzpatrick’s stay as the Miami Dolphins’ starting quarterback will not be lasting much longer, but he does not seem worried. In fact, Fitzpatrick is embracing his role.

Fitzpatrick was a guest on Eric Wood’s “What’s Next” podcast episode that was published on Monday. The two were teammates on the Buffalo Bills, and Fitzpatrick talked with Wood about how he plans to mentor Tagovailoa, who was drafted No. 5 overall by Miami in April.

Fitzpatrick expressed that he has told Tagovailoa he is available to provide advice and mentor him. He called himself Tua’s “biggest cheerleader.”

It’s unclear whether the Dolphins plan to have Tagovailoa start the season, but letting Fitzpatrick begin the year as the starter for a few games might make sense. Tagovailoa is coming off hip surgery and is at a disadvantage given the lack of offseason activity. Fitzpatrick started 15 games for the Dolphins last season and helped them win five games, so he might be good for continuity.

Given his attitude, he will make a perfect mentor for Tua.

5 favorites to win NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year

Joe Burrow

The NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award can be tough to predict. It’s based as much on opportunity as anything else; if you don’t play as a rookie, you’re obviously not going to excel. Add in the uncertainty of predicting how a first-year player will adapt to the league, and it can be a bit of a crapshoot.

Still, we can make some educated guesses based on opportunity and ability. With that in mind, here are our five early favorites for 2020 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year.


Tua Tagovailoa has highest-selling jerseys in NFL since draft

Tua Tagovailoa

The top-selling jersey in the NFL since the NFL Draft? It isn’t new Tampa Bay Buccaneers players Tom Brady or Rob Gronkowski, nor is it top pick Joe Burrow.

An NFL spokesman announced that Tua Tagovailoa’s Miami Dolphins jerseys are the top two sellers since the draft, according to Cameron Wolfe of ESPN. His aqua home uniform is the top seller over the last two weeks, while the road white version is No. 2.

Four different versions of Brady’s new Buccaneers uniforms occupy spots three through six, while Gronkowski’s jersey is seventh. Burrow’s black Bengals home uniform follows at No. 8.

If nothing else, the Dolphins have hit on a marketable star. Tagovailoa is clearly popular across the entire league, and he may not even be a year one starter. He’s also going to be a very wealthy young man.

Dolphins officially sign Tua Tagovailoa to rookie deal

Tua Tagovailoa

It’s a done deal: Tua Tagovailoa has signed his rookie deal with the Miami Dolphins.

Tagovailoa has officially signed, according to various reports, and gets a $19.6 million signing bonus that is fully guaranteed.

While a formality, everyone will be happy to see this sorted out. The rookie quarterback is expected to compete for the starting job in Miami with veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick.

We already knew what jersey number Tagovailoa will wear, and it won’t be that of one of the most legendary quarterbacks in league history.