Rookie Tua Tagovailoa starts for the Dolphins in first season with the NFL, overcoming various injuries to make his debut.
By Oliver Collins
Tua Tagovailoa rose to become one of the most promising young quarterbacks in college football, continuing his draft stock even after tearing his ACL. Tagovailoa was born in Ewa Beach, Hawaii and immediately received nationwide spotlights for his quick legs and lazar fast throws. It came as no surprise when decided to bring his talents to the most consistent college football teams, the University of Alabama.
Just after his commitment to the college however, his childhood idol and grandfather, Seu Tagovailoa, passed away, bringing a great deal of depression upon Tua who debated continuing with football. Only after his father convinced him that the only way to carry on his grandfather's legacy was to continue with his football career did Tua set his mind straight with his work ethic on the field. In 2017 after Jalen Hurts and the Crimson Tide were blown, Tagovailoa took the reins leading Alabama to yet another national championship against Georgia. Tagovailoa didn’t stop there, taking the starting job the year after and keeping the team among the best in the U.S.
In 2019 Tagovailoa suffered a series of injuries including a high ankle sprain, however he continued to play off and on throughout the season. In January 2020 Tagovailoa decided to forego the 2020 season and declare for the NFL draft where he was drafted by the Miami Dolphins.
As most players don’t start for their first NFL season automatically Tagovailoa was benched for Ryan Fitzpatrik until last week when he threw one touchdown and 102 yards, against the New York Jets. The Jets is a team that isn’t exactly top notch; this is a small challenge for someone of Tua’s talent. The young star played well and was a good sign for the Miami Dolphins fans there are out there. Although the remainder of the Dolphins quarterback depth chart is up in the air for this year it is obvious Tagovailoa will be a star when the time comes.
Tua Tagovailoa came from almost nothing, a background of pop warner in Hawaii, he showed great talent when it came to throwing the ball. His commitment to Alabama cemented him a career in the NFL where he will likely have large success. After his first game it’s clear to see why Tagovailoa went in the first round and it will be interesting how the rest of the season for him and the Dolphins will go.
Melanie Moyer '22,