Tyreek Hill praises Tua Tagovailoa ahead of key season for Dolphins QB
Tagovailoa has had an inconsistent start to his professional career, partly due to injuries and partly due to a lack of offensive weapons in South Beach. But Hill's championship pedigree figures to help Tagovailoa and the Dolphins reverse course.
Still, being in Miami alongside the former Alabama QB took some getting used to for Hill, which he admitted this week when meeting with the media.
"At first, I thought it was going to be something crazy, the ball going all over the place," Hill said of taking the field with Tagovailoa after spending the last four seasons alongside Patrick Mahomes. "But Tua actually has probably one of the prettiest balls I've ever caught in my life. It's very catchable.
"I don't want to continue because the more I talk, the more it sounds weird. Tua is a very accurate quarterback. That's all I'm going to say."
Still, Hill continued his praise of Tagovailoa.
"I just feel like football is all about confidence, and I'm very confident in my quarterback," Hill said. "So I just feel like if I'm able to help him get all the confidence in the world and push other guys to push that confidence into him, then the sky's the limit for the guy because he's a heck of a talent."
Hill has proven himself in the NFL. In addition to helping the Chiefs win Super Bowl LIV, he is a six-time Pro Bowler, three-time first-team All-Pro selection, and was named to the NFL 2010s All-Decade Team.
Conversely, Tagovailoa is still trying to make his mark.
Last season, despite missing four games, Tagovailoa threw for 2,653 yards and completed 67.8% of his passes, throwing 16 touchdowns and ten interceptions. That was after a rookie season in which he threw for 1,814 yards, 11 touchdowns and five interceptions in nine starts, completing 64.1% of his passes.
On Wednesday, Nick Wright discussed Hill's comments, which seem to allude to the idea that the football world might be sleeping on Tagovailoa, a sentiment that Wright didn't agree with.
"Guys, we know that he can't throw the ball further than 35 yards," Wright said. "I watch him play and it looks like he's playing 500 in the schoolyard, throwing little pop flys."
Chris Broussard felt the opposite, expressing his optimism that Tagovailoa's performance will improve with time, especially with Hill in his receiving corps.
"He's only started 21 games — that's not even a season and a half," Broussard said. "Oh, and in those 21 games, the first season, he was coming off a horrific hip injury. He had a receiving corps that was pedestrian at best. And in the last two years, he had one of the three, maybe five worst offensive lines in football.
"Oh, and in those 21 starts, he goes 13-8!"
While Miami might have suffered from lack of talent on the offensive side over the past two years, that issue has apparently been addressed — meaning Tagovailoa will surely be expected to put together a winning season once again.