Schefter: Dolphins Signed Ryan Fitzpatrick with 'Eyes' on Tua Tagovailoa in 2020

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMarch 18, 2019

Alabama's Tua Tagovailoa throws during the first half the NCAA college football playoff championship game against Clemson, Monday, Jan. 7, 2019, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
Ben Margot/Associated Press

The Miami Dolphins have reportedly already targeted their quarterback of the future after signing veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick and trading Ryan Tannehill.

According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, the AFC East team had its "eyes on Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa for 2020" after adding Fitzpatrick. Schefter reported Miami signed the latter to a two-year deal worth $11 million that could increase to as much as $20 million with incentives.

This comes after the Dolphins announced they traded Tannehill and a 2019 sixth-round draft pick to the Tennessee Titans in exchange for a 2019 seventh-round draft pick and 2020 fourth-round draft pick.

Fitzpatrick has been in the league since the then-St. Louis Rams selected him in the seventh round of the 2005 draft. He has played for the Rams, Cincinnati Bengals, Buffalo Bills, Tennessee Titans, Houston Texans, New York Jets and Tampa Bay Buccaneers throughout his career as a journeyman quarterback who has served as a backup, starter and veteran leader at times.

He played eight games in 2018 for Tampa Bay when Jameis Winston was either suspended or benched and completed 66.7 percent of his passes for 2,366 yards, 17 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Still, he is 36 years old and not the quarterback of the future for a Dolphins team looking to establish a track record of success after missing the playoffs in 15 of the last 17 years.

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As for Tagovailoa, he was a 2018 Heisman Trophy finalist for Alabama thanks to 3,966 passing yards, 190 rushing yards, 48 total touchdowns and six interceptions. He led the Crimson Tide to the College Football Playoff national championship game, where they ultimately lost to Clemson.

However, he played hero the previous year when he entered the national title game against Georgia at halftime in place of Jalen Hurts and directed a comeback win to cement his status as an Alabama legend.

The Dolphins may need to lose a number of games during the 2019 campaign because Tagovailoa could be one of the first picks in the 2020 NFL draft.