Tua Tagovailoa offers surprising reaction to getting benched in Miami Dolphins loss

Tua Tagovailoa and Anthony Chickillo Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Following the Miami Dolphins’ 20-13 loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday, rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa offered a mature assessment regarding his benching during the game.

Tagovailoa completed 11 passes for 83 yards and threw for one touchdown, but the Dolphins had trouble moving the ball. In the fourth quarter, Dolphins head coach Brian Flores inserted veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick, a change that resulted in no complaints from Tagovailoa.

“My thoughts were, whatever was going to be best for the team,” Tagovailoa said. “When I was in, we couldn’t really get things going and Coach felt like it was the best decision to put Fitz in to give us a spark. When I heard that, it’s really what’s best for the team.

“If we were to win with Fitz in there, the locker room would be a lot different and everyone would be a lot happier. It just sucks to lose.”

The defeat snapped a five-game winning streak for the Dolphins and also marked the first time that the team had lost with Tagovailoa as starting quarterback.

Last week, Tagovailoa was forced to deal with a foot injury, but that issue didn’t appear to have any bearing on the rookie’s performance.

One aspect of the game that certainly didn’t help Tagovailoa’s efforts to move the Dolphins’ offense was the pressure he faced all day. He was sacked six times in the outing.

That beating likely played a role in the coaching staff’s decision to bench the rookie.

Next Sunday, the Dolphins will look to get back on the winning track as they face the winless New York Jets, who they shut out, 24-0, on Oct. 18.

Sunday’s loss put their season record at 6-4, one game behind the Buffalo Bills in the AFC East, who were on their bye week.