Tua Tagovailoa to Start for Dolphins vs. Jaguars If Practice 'Goes Well,' per Flores

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVOctober 15, 2021

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 19: Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa #1 of the Miami Dolphins looks to make a pass play against the Buffalo Bills in the first half of the game at Hard Rock Stadium on September 19, 2021 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is trending toward a return, potentially as soon as Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, Dolphins head coach Brian Flores said Friday that Tua will start Sunday in London against the Jags as long as "all goes well in practice."

Tagovailoa has missed the Dolphins' past three games after suffering fractured ribs in a Week 2 loss to the Buffalo Bills.

Jacoby Brissett started in place of the injured Tagovailoa the past three weeks, going 0-3 in the process. For the season, Miami is 1-4 and tied with the New York Jets for last place in the AFC East.

Miami's only win of the season came in Week 1 against the New England Patriots when Tua played the full game, completing 59.3 percent of his passes for 202 yards with one touchdown and one interception, as well as a rushing score.

Buffalo knocked Tagovailoa out early in Week 2 after he went 1-of-4 for 13 yards with no touchdowns or picks. The Bills went on to win that game 35-0.

Tagovailoa is in his second season after Miami selected him No. 5 overall in the 2020 draft out of Alabama.

He began his rookie season as the backup to veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick, but he eventually took over and started nine games. Tagovailoa went 6-3 as a starter and completed 64.1 percent of his attempts for 1,814 yards, 11 touchdowns and five interceptions.

He has yet to prove he can be a franchise quarterback and has been somewhat hesitant in taking shots downfield, but he likely gives Miami a better chance to win than Brissett.

Sunday's game is a huge one for the Dolphins, as a loss would drop them to 1-5 and put their playoff hopes on life support.

Miami does have a winnable game on tap in Week 6 since the Jaguars are one of only two winless teams in the NFL this season with an 0-5 record.

A win over Jacksonville would give the Dolphins some much-needed momentum heading into another winnable game against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 7, followed by a tough road matchup with the Buffalo Bills in Week 8 and a much softer home date with the Houston Texans in Week 9.


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