What Miami Dolphins’ Tua Tagovailoa Can Learn From Peyton Manning at Pro Bowl Games

Peyton Manning is coaching Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa at the 2024 Pro Bowl Games. Tagovailoa should be a sponge during their week together.

ORLANDO — When Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa joined Peyton Manning and his brother Eli on the ManningCast two months back, Tagovailoa seemed nervous and even a bit starstruck by the company he was keeping.

There should be no nerves if he’s asked back in 2024. Tagovailoa should be comfortable with the first family of football after spending the week with them here at the Pro Bowl Games.

Peyton Manning’s Take on Miami Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa

Manning is Tua’s coach in the still-newish-look Pro Bowl. Tagovailoa is one of three AFC quarterbacks who agreed to participate in the skills competition and Sunday’s flag football game.

The others? C.J. Stroud (Houston Texans) and Gardner Minshew (Indianapolis Colts). Patrick Mahomes is unavailable because he’s preparing for the Super Bowl, while Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson declined invitations.

And yet, on Saturday, Peyton Manning wasn’t hanging his head.

“I love them,” Manning said of his QB room. “I love Tua, and C.J. has been awesome. Been fun getting to know him. I’ve known Gardner for a long time, so it’s been fun being with all three of those guys.

“We’re going to let them all play, and they got great weapons obviously with Tyreek [Hill] and [Stefon] Diggs and [Ja’Marr] Chase and [Keenan] Allen. But yeah, I’m excited about it. It’s been a fun week with them.”

One of Tagovailoa’s biggest strengths, per Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel, is his ability and willingness to take instruction. On a number of occasions, McDaniel has called Tua “one of the best learners” he’s been around.

And so, Tagovailoa should pick Manning’s brain this week on how to make the leap from good to great.

Peyton Manning really didn’t become Peyton Manning until a half-decade into his career.

He lost his first three playoff starts. His first of five MVP awards didn’t come until his sixth season.

And he threw a staggering 81 interceptions in his first four years as a pro — more than twice as many as Tua has thrown since entering the league in 2020.

So, while Tagovailoa admittedly still has much to work on his game, Manning should be held up as an example of how no quarterback is a finished product this early in their career.

“I had plenty of ups and downs and, you know, there’s no guarantee that just because you had a good first or second year, that means it’s gonna be good the next year,” Manning told reporters here Saturday. “I had a bad rookie year. Kind of a good second year, good third year, kind of an off fourth year. So it’s a marathon, not a sprint.”

What’s more, Tagovailoa and those who want him to succeed should take heart knowing that Manning thinks his best is yet to come.

MORE: Will Tagovailoa Get a Long-Term Deal?

“They did a great job [with] his offseason training and then sort of the approach from McDaniel to keep him healthy and, you know, getting the ball out on time, and it made a difference, right?

“There’s a difference when your starting quarterback’s in there every single week, especially with a guy like him and what he and [Jaylen] Waddle and Tyreek were able to do with their timing and that offense.

“It’s exciting, and the future is even more exciting.”

As the 2023 NFL season comes to a close, the 2024 NFL Draft is on the horizon. Pro Football Network has you covered with everything from team draft needs to the Top 100 prospects available. Plus, fire up PFN’s Mock Draft Simulator to put yourself in the general manager’s seat and make all the calls!

Listen to the PFN Dolphins Podcast

Listen to the PFN Dolphins Podcast! Click the embedded player below to listen, or you can find the PFN Dolphins Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, and all major podcast platforms.  Be sure to subscribe and leave us a five-star review! Rather watch instead? Check out the PFN Dolphins Podcast on our NFL YouTube channel.

Join the Conversation!

Related Articles