How We Got Here
Tua Tagovailoa is one of the most intriguing prospects in this draft class. For most of the college football season, Tagovailoa was seen as the most talented prospect on the board. He played quarterback for the Alabama Crimson Tide, putting up sparking numbers and leading the Tide to a National Championship in his tenure.
Tagovailoa injured his hip in mid-November that required season-ending surgery, ending his storied Alabama career. With a devastating injury such as one to the hip, there was talk that Tua’s surgery would be career-ending. For everyone’s sake, that was proven to be false, and Tagovailoa has fought back from his injury well enough to be throwing again.
With the 2020 NFL Draft under two weeks away, Tua Tagovailoa conducted a private Pro Day on video to send to inquiring NFL teams. According to the scouts seeing the video, he performed admirably, showing the arm strength and accuracy that enamored scouts from the get-go.
What remains to be seen is whether or not his previous injuries will linger into the future. If NFL teams decide that his injuries are behind him, he has the talent to be the first player taken off of the board. If the injuries linger in the mind’s of prospecting teams, Tua could face a drop in the draft.
Here's Tua's Pro Day footage obtained from an NFL team. Enjoy the thread. (1/7) pic.twitter.com/MnGlSEF7LC— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) April 10, 2020
There was talk before the college football season that teams would “Tank for Tua” this season. When that was being thrown around, the team most talked about was the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins have been linked to Tua Tagovailoa for months, and with them picking No. 5 in the NFL Draft, they’re hoping he falls to them.
However, with teams in the later picks with potential needs at quarterback, and the Lions apparently being open for business at pick No. 3, the Dolphins may not be able to sit and wait. With a boatload of picks in their disposal, don’t be surprised if the Dolphins make a move to get to pick No. 3 and snag Tagovailoa.
Los Angeles Chargers
Sitting right behind the Dolphins are the Los Angeles Chargers. They let go long-time quarterback Philip Rivers this off-season, and are looking for a long-term replacement. It remains to be seen if the Chargers would be willing to trade up above the Dolphins, as it seems as if that’s the only way they’ll be able to select Tua.
The more likely scenario would be the Chargers standing pat and selecting Justin Herbert, or even trade back into the later first round.
After signing Nick Foles in free agency just a year ago, the Jaguars seemed to set at quarterback. As we know, that didn’t workout, and Foles is now on the Chicago Bears. What the Jaguars are left with is 2nd-year quarterback Gardner Minshew.
Minshew had mixed reviews a season ago in his rookie season. He wasn’t expected to see the field, and when forced into play, played admirably early on. The magic died down as the season went on, and there are questions if he can be the long-term answer.
With the Jaguars picking No. 9, they are in a spot where they’d have to make a significant jump in the draft to have the opportunity to pick Tagovailoa.
That seems unlikely, but if they move their disgruntled pass-rusher Yannick Ngakoue, they may have more picks at their disposal. While this is long-shot, nobody would disagree if the Jaguars decided they needed a quarterback.