Tua Tagovailoa hack game does not equal future success


picture: Getty Images

Late 35-14 before the fourth quarter, the Miami Dolphins scored 28 points in the last frame to make a fantastic comeback against the Baltimore Ravens. Miami quarterback Toa Tagovailoa had six touchdowns that day, marking his second game of his career with more than two touchdowns, and his first game with more than four assists. Tagovailoa has been under a lot of pressure to perform this season and appears to have silenced many skeptics on Sunday with his comeback against the Ravens’ strong defense.

I’m here to be a passive Nancy. I’m not saying that Tagovailoa’s performance on Sunday wasn’t great. she was. Some of the throws he made were *Makes Italian hand gesture* Chef’s kiss! But think of the players who threw more than six points in a game recently. Since 2010, the list includes men such as Patrick Mahomes, Ben Roethlisberger, Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning and Drew Bryce, but also includes Ryan Fitzpatrick, Matt Flynn, Nick Foles, and Mitchell Trubesky.

So, there are seemingly three options, either he falls as insignificant as those other three players, becomes a Hall of Famer like the top five, or continues to be the mediocre midfielder who never came close to that day Professional again, as Ryan “FitzMagic” Fitzpatrick. While it would be easy to assume the third option would happen, Tua looks different from the likes of Flynn, Foles, and Trubisky. For one, Tagoviloa threw for 469 yards (second among the three quarterbacks listed) with most of that yardage coming in clutch time. If those six grades were more widespread I would be less inclined to trust the Tua, but the fact that so much of that yardage and most of those touchdowns came at a critical time shows a clutch factor we’ve never seen in a Tua before. Will we see him again? Probably not, but now he has shown us that side of him that we can’t ignore.

However, Trubisky’s six-TD performance bears some similarities to Tagovailoa. This was Tua’s second match in Mike McDaniel’s system. Trubisky had played six TD games in just four games in Matt Nagy’s tenure in Chicago. However, as Trubisky relied on men like Tarik Cohen, Taylor Gabriel and Trey Burton, Tagovailoa was arguably the best receiving team in the NFL. Tua looked good, but how successful can he be attached to a Tyreek Hill break speed, Jaylen Waddle’s dribbling, or McDaniel’s system? I don’t know. Tua was able to direct a lot of those deep shots at Hill in the breadbasket, but Hill was open, too. Is it impressive that you make those deep throws or does Hill find a hole in a high school that includes Marlon Humphrey, Marcus Peters and Marcus Williams?

All I’m saying is that while it’s fun looking at recent performances and judging someone’s future by a career match, it’s probably best to temper expectations. After all, neither Trubisky nor Nagy lasted through four more seasons in Windy City. I hope things are different in South Beach, but we can’t be sure yet.