Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa took the next step in getting his NFL career started by moving to South Florida and meeting with the team’s medical staff on Monday.
In fact, it sounds like his trainers are having to keep him from pushing too hard as he continues to rehabilitate the injuries that he sustained last season.
Prior to Tagovailoa’s arrival, the Dolphins’ staff had only been able to meet with the rookie during February’s NFL scouting combine.
The emergence of the coronavirus pandemic subsequently eliminated any face-to-face contact between the two sides up until now.
In most cases, that might not have been a major issue, but Tagovailoa underwent major hip surgery last November. Despite the lack of interaction, the Dolphins selected Tagovailoa with the fifth overall pick in April’s draft.
Tagovailoa has been rigorously working with physical therapist Kevin Wilk in Alabama in order to rehabilitate his surgically repaired hip.
“He’s a little bit ahead as far as where we would like him,” Wilk told the Sun Sentinel. “We’re constantly trying to slow him down just a little bit because an athlete like that is just chomping at the bit just begging to get back out there. He wants to do more and more so we have to hold him back. And really, that was from the beginning. He always wanted to do more.”
That’s good news to the Dolphins, who selected Tagovailoa as the team’s quarterback of the future, even though some teams avoided selecting him because of the health concerns
Tagovailoa has been compared by some to Hall of Famer Steve Young, since both are mobile southpaws. However, the Dolphins will make sure that he’s fully healthy before putting him in the lineup.
For now, the Dolphins are expected to start the season with veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick behind center, while Josh Rosen could also be in the mix. The investment being made in Tagovailoa is far too much to simply rush him back, a move that could backfire in a major way for the Dolphins.