We haven’t seen what Tua Tagovailoa can really do but we will, eventually.
The Miami Dolphins have a star quarterback in the making but so far, we haven’t really seen what all the Tua Tagovailoa hype is all about.
Tua Tagovailoa has a big arm. He has quick feet. He has a high football IQ. So far this year we have a small sample size of what he is going to bring to the Miami Dolphins.
Great quarterbacks can lift a team to victory over better teams and Tagovailoa is winning games against teams that many believe are better. Tua came close to beating the Chiefs and beat both the Rams and Cardinals earlier this year. He has wins against the Chargers and Patriots as well. His two losses? The Chiefs and the Broncos.
With these types of wins, you would think that Tua would be getting far more accolades but that really isn’t the case. See most of his gameplay has been inconsistent. His passes can be perfect throws through the eye of a needle and the next one be to the ghost on the sideline.
This is where he will get better. This is where he will develop better pocket awareness. On Sunday, we saw how quickly he can grow from his mistakes. The first half interception at the goal line should have been a Tagovailoa sprint to the endzone. In the 2nd half, he didn’t take any risks with the ball and scored on his own.
That, however, is not what fans are waiting to see. Fans want to see the deep ball. His longest pass has been for 35 yards but he is only averaging 6.5 yards per attempt. There are reasons for this. First, we can point to Chan Gailey and his play calling.
On Sunday, Gailey was smart to pound the ball at the Patriots, it worked and helped the Dolphins win but most of this year with Tua has been keeping him safe and not allowing him to play a more vertical game. There has been a lot of dink and dunk passes. The same kind of passes fans soured on with Ryan Tannehill.
The lack of a consistent running game doesn’t help either as teams can play back and force the Dolphins to play small ball. Which they have. A better run game, as seen on Sunday, helps open the passing game. Miami didn’t need to control the game through the air, however, as the run game was exceptional.
Talent is also a big issue. While the Dolphins have a good and developing group of tight-ends, Miami seriously lacks depth and quality at wide receiver. DeVante Parker is not having the same rapport with Tua that he had with Ryan Fitzpatrick and outside of Parker, the rest of the Dolphins receivers are just o.k. and that is they are not injured.
Hopefully, the Dolphins will give Tua more talent around him. Better upfront protection, a top running back, and a deep threat receiver to compliment Parker. Tua is playing well given the talent he is working with and the Dolphins are winning. Take that as you will.