Not all fans are convinced that Tua Tagovailoa is the franchise quarterback the Miami Dolphins hoped he would be. For those who fell that way, there are other options. The Dolphins might not think so.
The older you get the longer the hangover lasts. That gut wrenching feeling in the pit of your stomach that you can’t get rid of. That’s the life of a Miami Dolphins fan. Don’t get me wrong, making it to the playoffs in consecutive years is amazing. Doing nothing with that opportunity is what hurts the most.
After the Dolphins loss on Saturday night, I watched the other playoff games and was excited to see what a playoff caliber quarterback looks like. Matthew Stafford and Jared Goff, put on a show. Jordan Love was untouchable and C.J, Stroud looks legit, especially in his rookie year. Then we saw Josh Allen, showing why the AFC East is still his division.
Tua's performance on Saturday night is what is causing this hangover to last. Tua was terrible. There is nothing else you can potentially say. But it wasn’t just on Saturday, the games leading to the playoffs, everyone could see that December football was a challenge for him.
First three games in December, Tua had a passer rating of 116. In the last three games of the season, that dropped down to 70. Ironically, those last three games were against playoff-caliber teams. Tua's performance at the beginning of the season was MVP-ish. Everyone saw it and noticed a player that was ready to break out. But taking two seasons of work into consideration, we see that Tua is built to play in September and October. The problem is championships are won in November and December, which are the two problematic months in his career.
Think about this: Skylar Thompson, the Miami Dolphins 3rd string quarterback who was forced into starting the Dolphins playoff game last year, due to Tua’s injury, had more passing yards in a playoff game than Tua did against the Chiefs. Both games were played outside in frozen conditions, but Skylar actually was one play away from causing an upset against the Bills.
Where am I going with this? I think Tua is a great person, a solid quarterback, but not the franchise quarterback that the Miami Dolphins deserve or want. So what options do the Dolphins have, there are three scenarios worth considering.