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Dolphins' Tua Tagovailoa Discusses How He Deals with Social-Media Criticism

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVDecember 6, 2021

Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Miami Dolphins are one of the hottest teams in the NFL, riding a five-game winning streak.

But before that, the team languished in a seven-game losing streak, and criticism followed. Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa talked about dealing with that online vitriol during an appearance on The Joe Rose Show with Zach Krantz on AM 560 Sports WQAM (Miami) on Monday:

"I'm not blind to it. It's not like I turn a deaf ear to all of this. But, for me, it's take it for what it's worth. You just gotta continue to be yourself and do what you do. No one else can come into the game and do the things that you want to do, that you want to achieve, for you. You've got to go out there and do it for yourself, do it for the team, and really, that's what it's all about..."

Not all of the criticism is coming from social media, either. In the past two weeks, New York Jets defensive lineman John Franklin-Myers and New York Giants defensive back Logan Ryan have taken shots at the young quarterback.

Connor Hughes @Connor_J_Hughes

John Franklin-Myers said Tua beat the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Jets?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Jets</a> by throwing up “prayers” and “sometimes prayers are answered.”

"I don't know if you guys saw my high school quarterback tape, but I'm going to put it out there, emergency," Ryan told reporters after the Dolphins beat the Giants 20-9 on Sunday. "A lot like Tua, a lefty. I can throw two-yard passes to the left."

Tagovailoa, 23, has had an up-and-down NFL career after being the No. 5 overall pick in the 2020 NFL draft. He started his rookie season behind Ryan Fitzpatrick on the depth chart, though he eventually took over as the starter and led the team to a 6-3 mark, throwing for 1,814 yards, 11 scores and five interceptions while completing 64.1 percent of his passes. 

A fractured middle finger has limited him to eight starts this year and a 4-4 record. He's thrown for 1,945 yards, 12 touchdowns and six interceptions while completing 70.9 percent of his passes, showing growth at the position. 

He threw for 244 yards and two scores in Sunday's win over the Giants, though after the game he said there's plenty of room for improvement in Miami's offense. 

Miami Dolphins @MiamiDolphins

.<a href="https://twitter.com/Tua?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Tua</a> connects with <a href="https://twitter.com/mackhollins?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@mackhollins</a> for 6️⃣! 🙌<br><br>📺: Watch <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NYGvsMIA?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NYGvsMIA</a> on <a href="https://twitter.com/NFLonFOX?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NFLonFOX</a> <a href="https://t.co/6Pb7X3WNz8">pic.twitter.com/6Pb7X3WNz8</a>

Miami Dolphins @MiamiDolphins

.<a href="https://twitter.com/Tua?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Tua</a> 🤝 <a href="https://twitter.com/IAF_1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@IAF_1</a> <br><br>📺: Watch <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NYGvsMIA?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NYGvsMIA</a> on <a href="https://twitter.com/NFLonFOX?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NFLonFOX</a> <a href="https://t.co/ZVRvN5bxlR">pic.twitter.com/ZVRvN5bxlR</a>

"I'm glad we won, but I think there's a lot of things that we left out there on the field—a lot of plays that we wish we could have back," he told reporters. "But then again it falls back to the execution of us. ... I think we can get better, continue to get better, find ways to get better."

One thing that won't help is listening to outside criticism. Tagovailoa appears to have figured that part out. 

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