Tua Tagovailoa has taken over as the Miami Dolphins’ starting quarterback, but Brian Flores hasn’t been afraid to bring in the closer if need be. Ryan Fitzpatrick came into the team’s loss to the Denver Broncos a few weeks ago, and replaced his former understudy once again last weekend, leading the team to a big win over the Las Vegas Raiders.
Fitzpatrick began the year as the starter, and played well, but at midseason the team opted for Tagovailoa. The team wants to see what it has from its rookie quarterback, and overall Tua has looked pretty good. The Dolphins are also playing for their playoff lives right now, and the team isn’t taking chances if its quarterback doesn’t have it one day.
For some young quarterbacks, that could be disorienting. Tua, who will start Week 17, seems used to the arrangement, and heading into a must-win game against the AFC East champion Buffalo Bills, he says that it doesn’t add pressure with Fitzpatrick looking over his shoulder.
“I’d say for me there’s really no extra, added pressure,” Tagovailoa said, according to the Miami Herald. “The expectation for myself is very high in how I perform and how I go out there and try to lead the guys to victory.”
No excuses: Tagovailoa clear-eyed about Week 16 shortcomings, and what needs to change https://t.co/F8o7Mo9Fq7
— Adam Beasley (@AdamHBeasley) December 30, 2020
“Obviously, this past weekend, I didn’t play to that standard,” the young Dolphins quarterback continued. “It’s more so me knowing that we’ve got to go out here and get the job done. If you can’t get the job done, then that’s on you. That’s on no one else.”
Tua Tagovailoa was 17-for-22 against Las Vegas, but wasn’t moving the ball at all. With just 94 yards, he was averaging a paltry 4.27 yards per pass. He also threw for one touchdown.
Fitzpatrick, meanwhile, came in and averaged 14 yards per pass, completing 9-of-13 for 182 yards and a touchdown.
The Miami Dolphins would clinch a Wild Card spot with a win over the Bills. It is unclear whether Buffalo will play its starters and try and lock up the No. 2 seed, or rest players ahead of the playoffs. Miami can still get in with a loss, but it would need some help, with a Baltimore Ravens loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, a Cleveland Browns loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers who will be resting players including Ben Roethlisberger, or an Indianapolis Colts loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The post Tua Tagovailoa Describes His Mindset After Getting Benched appeared first on The Spun.