Report: Brian Flores wanted Miami Dolphins to draft Justin Herbert over Tua Tagovailoa

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The Miami Dolphins selected Tua Tagovailoa with the fifth overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

However, Dolphins head coach Brian Flores reportedly wanted the team to draft Justin Herbert, who was chosen by the Los Angeles Chargers one pick later.

“Tagovailoa hasn’t had much good fortune since Miami selected him, and this setback comes at an inopportune time, with ownership mulling an acquisition of [Houston] Texans’ embattled franchise quarterback Deshaun Watson and Tagovailoa’s durability and future in South Florida already a subject of conservable debate,” wrote Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports. “Head coach Brian Flores has made it clear to those around him how much he prizes availability at the quarterback position (and prefers bigger, strapping pocket passers all things considered), spending his time as an assistant in New England around Hall of Famer Tom Brady.

“Numerous personnel men and coaches around the league have heard, dating back to last season, that Flores would have preferred to select Justin Herbert over Tagovailoa, although team and league sources say general manager Chris Grier consults with Flores on all big personnel moves and in general tries to provide the personnel the coaches covet. Regardless, Flores was quick to hook Tagovailoa from games his rookie season, injuries have been a problem for the passer since his time at Alabama, and the Dolphins have done considerable work on Watson, with owner Stephen Ross quite intrigued by the quarterback, sources said”.

The Dolphins clearly saw something special in Tagovailoa that pushed them to draft him over Herbert.

Given Tagovailoa’s lengthy injury history, many fans are probably wondering how things would have turned out if Miami selected Herbert instead.

After being placed on injured reserve on Saturday, Tagovailoa will miss at least three games. The Dolphins expect him to return in Week 6.

Herbert won the AP NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award last season after completing 396 passes for 4,336 yards and 31 touchdowns. He started 15 games for the Chargers.

Tagovailoa, on the other hand, started nine games last year and completed 186 passes for 1,814 yards and 11 touchdowns.

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Orel is a proud contributor of Dolphin Nation. He started following the league in the late 1990s and was able to watch Dan Marino's final playing years.