Tua Tagovailoa Makes Preseason Debut In Second Year
Following a rookie campaign filled with constant ups and downs, and an offseason filled with uncertainty from media and fans, Tua Tagovailoa has a lot to prove this year. While the young quarterback showed flashes of what Alabama fans came to know and love last season, a lack of consistency as well as conservative play calling from the coaching staff led to a rookie year with more questions than answers.
Playing in his first NFL preseason game despite being in his second year, Tagovailoa showed a lot of what he was known for in his time at Alabama: confidence and precision.
Tagovailoa finished the day just 8-of-11 for 99 yards with an interception, but this is the preseason, and he showed more than enough in that small sample size. Looking more surefooted than he has since his injury, Tagovailoa showed his excellent accuracy, fitting throws into tight spaces and extending drives.
"I thought I did alright, there were a lot of things that we need to clean up. Offensively, with our communication, more so our execution with our plays that we're given but for the first time coming out in a real game-like situation, environment, I thought it was pretty good, for the first time," said Tagovailoa. "Obviously there's a lot of things that we need to clean up, but that's what we've got film for. When we hop onto the plane we'll take a look at some of those plays that didn't go the way we wanted to and we'll get those fixed."
The second-year quarterback's best highlight of the day came on a 50-yard completion to Mike Gesicki, where he stood tall in the pocket and delivered the ball in stride.
After a solid start where he displayed many of the traits that led to his high drafting, his final decision of the day, which resulted in an interception, left many fans still concerned about their quarterback. Throwing into the middle of the field, trying to find his tight end, Tagovailoa's pass was picked off by DeAndre Houston-Carson, ending the quarterback's day on a sour note.
"I think the DB made a great play. That wasn't a good decision on my part. When you get down to the red area you've got to make good, quick decisions. That was a quick decision but not a good decision," said the second year quarterback.
Overall, Tagovailoa showed a lot of poise and confidence in his preseason debut. The positives displayed in his three drives far outweighed the negative, and his sophomore season is shaping up to be a great year. The Dolphins next preseason matchup is on Aug. 21 against the Atlanta Falcons, and the season kicks off Sept. 12 against the New England Patriots.