Dolphins' Ryan Fitzpatrick Says He's Tua Tagovailoa's 'Biggest Cheerleader'

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMay 19, 2020

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - DECEMBER 29: Ryan Fitzpatrick #14 of the Miami Dolphins looks to pass against the New England Patriots  at Gillette Stadium on December 29, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Ryan Fitzpatrick will have to battle Tua Tagovailoa for the Miami Dolphins' starting quarterback job, but the veteran has made himself available as a mentor for the rookie. 

The 37-year-old discussed his role on the What's Next podcast with former player Eric Wood:

Field Yates @FieldYates

Ryan Fitzpatrick provided some incredible perspective to @EWood70 on his "What's Next" podcast on mentoring Tua Tagovailoa while also competing for the starting job. Strongly recommend reading his full thoughts. https://t.co/UjyRP6GXUK

"I'm his biggest cheerleader right now, but I also want to be out there playing," he said.

Fitzpatrick started 13 games for the Dolphins last season and could remain on top of the depth chart until Tagovailoa—whom Miami selected with the No. 5 overall pick in the 2020 draft—is ready to play. 

Fitzpatrick is an excellent resource for younger players considering he has spent 15 seasons in the NFL and has played games for eight different organizations. He's also still capable of competing with younger and more highly touted quarterbacks for playing time.

Last April, the Dolphins traded for 2018 No. 10 overall pick Josh Rosen ahead of what seemed to be a rebuilding year. Instead, Fitzpatrick won the job during the preseason, while Rosen ended up making only three starts.

The journeyman also took starts away from Jameis Winston in 2018 with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and he held off young draft picks such as Christian Hackenberg and Bryce Petty when he was with the New York Jets. 

Tagovailoa has loads of upside after an impressive college career at Alabama, totaling 76 touchdown passes and only nine interceptions in 24 games over the past two years. The Dolphins selected him as their potential franchise quarterback of the future.

However, Fitzpatrick could still play a lot in 2020 as Tagovailoa acclimates to the NFL.