NFL

Tua Tagovailoa named Miami Dolphins starter – reports

By Sports Desk October 20, 2020

The Miami Dolphins have named Tua Tagovailoa as their starting quarterback, the rookie first-round pick taking over from Ryan Fitzpatrick.

Miami selected Tagovailoa with the fifth overall pick in the 2020 draft, despite concerns over a dislocated hip he suffered in his final college game for Alabama last November.

He made his debut on Sunday, appearing late in the fourth quarter as the Dolphins eased to a 24-0 win over the New York Jets to improve to 3-3.

And, according to reports from ESPN's Adam Schefter and NFL Network's Tom Pelissero, he will replace Fitzpatrick after Miami's Week 7 bye and make his first start against the Los Angeles Rams on November 1.

Though his errors did not prove critical against a dismal Jets team still waiting for their first win, Fitzpatrick was underwhelming in Week 6 as he threw for 191 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions.

His seven interceptions are the third-most in the NFL behind Kirk Cousins (10) and Carson Wentz (nine). Fitzpatrick is 18th of 33 qualifying quarterbacks in adjusted net yards per attempt with 6.62.

The 37-year-old was always seen as a placeholder and mentor for Tagovailoa, who will hope to reproduce his spectacular college performances at the highest level of the sport.

Tagovailoa threw for 7,442 yards, 87 touchdowns and 11 interceptions in a storied career with Alabama that saw him replace Jalen Hurts for the second half of the National Championship game at the end of the 2017 season and lead them to a dramatic overtime win over Georgia.

The most efficient quarterback in college football history with a 199.4 rating at Alabama, the Dolphins will hope Tagovailoa can provide an instant spark as they look to contend with the 4-2 Buffalo Bills in the race for the AFC East title.

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