Former Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Tua Tagovailoa wants to be a member of the Miami Dolphins. That much was clear following his numerous public appearances surrounding Super Bowl LIV in Miami. From posing in pictures with fans to talking up what it would be like to play for the Dolphins, Tua could not have been clearer: The team needs to snag him in April's NFL Draft no matter what it takes.
A love affair is blossoming between the quarterback Miami desperately needs and the city Tagovailoa deserves. It's imperative the Fins figure out a way to get Tua to Miami. Here's why it's time to stop asking questions about whether the Dolphins should draft Tua and start asking why they would even consider not doing whatever it takes to get him.
Tagovailoa is looking healthier by the day. Just look at the way Tua — a man who recently had major hip surgery and was banned from placing any pressure on his lower torso — takes these stairs. So beautiful. Sure, they're just stairs, but at this point in the rehab process, it's a terrific sign the quarterback can recover from a catastrophic injury.
To most people, these are just steps. But to Miami Dolphins fans, these are steps that lead to Heaven. They're blessed steps indeed.
#Dolphins GM Chris Grier just wrapped his presser at the Senior Bowl. He expects QB Ryan Fitzpatrick to return. This affirms the case for drafting QB Tua Tagovailoa and allowing him extra time to heal properly. Grier also remains high on the development of QB Josh Rosen. pic.twitter.com/pnBgI6n8Yb— Columnist, Phins com (@PhinsChris) January 22, 2020
Miami would expect nothing from Tua next season. The Dolphins are one of the few teams in the NFL that are truthful and realistic about what they are: a franchise with Super Bowl dreams but limited capabilities — at least for now.
Ryan Fitzpatrick will likely return next season but showed this past season with Josh Rosen that he won't get his feelings hurt if the Dolphins decide to bench him midseason for a young backup. Miami would be the perfect place for Tagovailoa to relax, rehab, learn, and prepare for 2021. And because Miami has no set quarterback, 2021 would definitely be his, with no aging star to hold on to the job longer than he should.
Miami needs Tua in 2021, not 2020. That's the sweet spot. Some teams would want him right away or too far down the line. Miami and Tua are on the same page.
“It’s a beautiful place,” Tua Tagovailoa tells Rich Eisen of Miami pic.twitter.com/mQZpyj11qa— Safid Deen ???????????????? (@Safid_Deen) January 30, 2020
Hawaii-raised Tua would feel closest to home in Miami. During Super Bowl week, it was revealed Tagovailoa's visit to the Magic City was his third time in town, including stops he made for Crimson Tide games. Tua's parents, though, had never been to Miami until Super Bowl LIV. They loved the city, and it's not hard to imagine why: Miami is the closest thing to Hawaii outside of, well, Hawaii. Surrounding areas, especially the Florida Keys, would make Tua feel right at home.
Does anyone really want to see Tua playing in the snow six times a year? Miami is where he belongs.
Miami fans have been on the Tua bandwagon longer than anyone else. If there is one fan base that would accept Tua for who he is, it's the Dolphins'. Why? Because they're pot committed here. Miami fans have been clamoring for Tua since day one, and they're not going to let some little hip injury get between destiny and their team.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to New Times Broward-Palm Beach's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling South Florida's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
After winning five games in a season when they should have been losing their hardest, the Dolphins have no business being in a position to get Tua. The only reason he might still end up in Miami is because of his injury. Miami fans are willing to take the risk and go forward, knowing that if it all blows up in their faces, at least there will be no regrets.
Tua will instantly put the Dolphins back on the national map. The Miami Dolphins are a hard sell these days to anyone who isn't emotionally invested in them. Tua would change all of that right away, creating a much-needed buzz around the Dolphins, something that hasn't been here since Ricky Williams was running wild.
The Dolphins would be instantly more marketable, more intriguing, and — most important for owner Stephen Ross — more valuable. Tua would have a LeBron effect on the Dolphins. Miami needs that badly.