National Football League

Betting the House

April 24, 2020

And just like that, Tua Tagovailoa's injury history is a thing of the past.

Well, maybe not a thing of the past – but not enough for the Miami Dolphins to ignore their future.

Tua Tagovailoa is arguably the best quarterback in Alabama history.

He played a mere 32 games in college and served as the Crimson Tide's starting QB for only two seasons – 2018 and 2019.

But for all of his accomplishments, you'd think he'd been there an eternity.

Outside of his history-making 87 passing touchdowns in those 32 games, what might be most impressive about Tua's college career is that in his 684 pass attempts, he only threw 11 interceptions.

We're not going to do the numbers for you, but just know that's a very low interception percentage.

Many before the NFL Draft believed Tua Tagovailoa to be the best quarterback prospect on the board, but his rich injury history caused hesitation among teams.

Was it worth taking a chance on a guy who in November, suffered a hip injury most often associated with high-speed motorcycle accidents?

Similar to all sports debates, there were two distinctly separate camps of thought before the draft.

But once the selection came down, cheers rang out for Miami's fearlessness in selecting Tagovailoa.

Earlier this week, Colin Cowherd implored teams to follow the advice of Alabama coach Nick Saban and not make the same mistake as the franchises that passed on Deshaun Watson in 2017.

"Nick Saban said, 'You pass on Tua, you're gonna regret it.' Remember what Dabo Swinney told us about Deshaun Watson? He told us he's the Michael Jordan of football players."

Watson was selected 12th in the 2017 NFL Draft. Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky was selected second and Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes was selected tenth.

"The tape is very, very good," said MMQB's Albert Breer after Miami selected Tagovailoa. "When scouts came through [Alabama], Nick Saban and his whole staff would tell them that [Tua] is a left-handed version of Drew Brees. That's what the Dolphins are getting here."

And according to reports, Miami was not scared off by Tagovailoa's severe bumps and bruises.

Tua's production at Alabama, injuries aside, outshined many of the top picks in recent memory.

Those numbers were bolstered significantly by Tagovailoa's 2019 performance, which amounted to only nine games because of his hip injury.

While the pick was met with mostly cheers, a few jeers came from Skip Bayless.

On Wednesday, Shannon Sharpe suggested that Tagovailoa should actually go No. 1 to Cincinnati over LSU's Joe Burrow.

"[Tua has] the highest QBR since they started tracking the stat 15 years ago. That's what his body of work is ... His arm talent is undeniable."

Still, Bayless believed that Tua's college fragility was just too glaring to ignore.

"When you think about the injury history, I keep thinking ... hurt in college, hurt in the pros."

Regardless, the Dolphins are all in on Tua Tagovailoa, and made it evident on Twitter.

Miami got its man – and his name is @Tuaamann.

Or, as hip hop artist and Miami Dolphins fan Rick Ross would say, "Tua Taglavlioa."

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