Stephen Ross has probably seen enough. Tua Tagovailoa isn’t going to lead the Miami Dolphins to a Super Bowl championship, and Ross must know it. Tua had a chance to change the entire narrative — and the Dolphins’ offseason plans — Sunday. Instead, he had arguably the worst game of his career at the worst possible time.
Tua Tagovailoa has arguably the worst game of his career in Week 17
Tua completed just 47.4% of his passes and turned the ball over twice in the Dolphins’ 34-3 shellacking at the hands of the Tennessee Titans. The loss ended the Dolphins’ playoff hopes when a victory would have put them one win away from the postseason.
And for Dolphins fans, it was yet another rerun of their least favorite television program.
Just like they did a year ago, they weren’t remotely competitive in a January game against an AFC playoff team when a win would have meant everything.
52 weeks ago, they lost to the Bills by 30. They lost by 31 on Sunday. And each time, Tua was dreadful. He doesn’t play well in bad weather. And that’s bad news for a Dolphins team that has road games each season against Buffalo, New York, and New England.
Does Brian Flores trust Tua?
Tua’s worst moment Sunday was when the ball slipped from his grasp as he cocked back to throw, losing a fumble on a play in which he wasn’t even touched. But that was far from his only gaffe. He’d have thrown at least 3 picks if the Titans could hang onto the football.
Even more damning? When the Dolphins wanted to throw deep Sunday, they asked Jacoby Brissett and Mike Gesicki to do it. No matter what this coaching staff says publicly, they coach as if they don’t trust their second-year signal-caller.
“I think it was rain, it was slick, but regardless of that, we’ve got to do a good job of protecting the football,” Dolphins coach Brian Flores said. “That’s always our No. 1 priority. We’ve got to do a better job protecting it. … [The Titans] had the same elements we were dealing with.”
Time for the Dolphins to move on?
Meanwhile, Tua’s fellow 2020 NFL Draft classmates proved once again that they’re superior talents, particularly former No. 1 Joe Burrow, who has thrown 8 touchdowns in the last two weeks — just 7 fewer TDs than Tua has thrown all year. Justin Herbert is a bonafide star in Los Angeles and will probably be in the playoffs this year. The Dolphins messed up by taking Tua over Herbert in 2020.
They would be compounding mistakes by sticking with him for a third season. Ross, Flores, and general manager Chris Grier already tipped their hand on who they want as their long-term quarterback. The Dolphins tried hard to trade for Deshaun Watson two months ago.
If Watson can get his very serious legal situation resolved, we expect them to try even harder two months from now. The Dolphins’ defense is good enough to win a Super Bowl with an elite quarterback. Tua simply isn’t that guy.
“I’ve heard this the entire time I’ve been here,” Tua said. “So, at the end of the day, I can control what I can control, and that’s to be the best version of myself for this team. We’ve got to move on to the next game at this point. We’ll look at the mistakes that we’ve made, make some corrections, and move on.”