Report: Injured Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa to Play vs. Bengals 'Barring a Setback'

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 29, 2022

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa #1 of the Miami Dolphins warms up before the game against the Buffalo Bills at Hard Rock Stadium on September 25, 2022 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images)
Eric Espada/Getty Images

Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is reportedly expected to start Thursday night against the Cincinnati Bengals.

According to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero, Tua should be good to go Thursday despite back and ankle injuries, provided he does not suffer any setbacks. Star wide receiver Jaylen Waddle is also expected to play through a groin injury.

Tagovailoa's health was a significant storyline during and after a Week 3 victory over the Buffalo Bills. He temporarily left the game after taking a hard hit and stumbled when he attempted to walk, although he eventually returned and led Miami to a victory.

The Dolphins initially announced it was a head injury, although head coach Mike McDaniel told reporters after the game it was a lower back issue that caused his legs to wobble.

Despite McDaniel's comments, Pelissero reported the National Football League Players Association had opened an investigation into how the team handled a concussion check for the quarterback.

Tagovailoa entered the 2022 season under something of a spotlight as he attempted to establish himself as the long-term franchise quarterback for the Dolphins after an inconsistent start to his career.

The 24-year-old has responded by completing 71.3 percent of his passes for 925 yards, eight touchdowns and two interceptions, taking advantage of an offense that has plenty of firepower with Tyreek Hill and Waddle on the outside.

With Tua leading the way, the Dolphins are one of only two remaining undefeated teams in the NFL this season at 3-0.

Veteran Teddy Bridgewater would step in if Tagovailoa does suffer a setback before Thursday night's game goes off, but for now, it appears as though Tua is poised lead the Dolphins in pursuit of a 4-0 start.