Former Super Bowl champ compares Tua Tagovailoa’s mental strength to Tom Brady’s and Peyton Manning’s

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Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is having the best season of his young career in the 2022 campaign, and former NFL quarterback Trent Dilfer recently praised him for it.

Dilfer spoke about Tagovailoa’s mental strength and compared it to those of legends like Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning.

“Imagine being Tua and what he’s gone through and everybody turning on him on the narrative, and it only made him stronger,” Dilfer said while speaking with Rich Eisen. “And that’s the stuff that Tom Brady has. That’s the stuff that Peyton Manning has. That’s the stuff that Aaron Rodgers has. That’s the stuff Jim Kelly has. That’s the stuff that these Hall of Famers have. They got something inside of them that says, ‘You told me I can’t? Wait and watch me do it.'”

It’s no surprise to hear Dilfer praise Tagovailoa. After all, in 2020, the one-time Pro Bowler and one-time Super Bowl champion called the University of Alabama product the “single best prospect” he had ever been around.

Tagovailoa was drafted by the Dolphins with the No. 5 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft and struggled a bit throughout his first two seasons. In those two seasons, he threw for 4,467 yards, 27 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. There were tons of ups and downs, and criticism from fans and coaches made him doubt his abilities.

The 24-year-old has seemingly put those doubts behind him this season, as he has completed 68.1 percent of his passes for 2,859 yards, 21 touchdowns and just five interceptions. Playing under Mike McDaniel has unlocked him, and he looks like the franchise quarterback many thought he’d be entering the league.

He did have a tough time against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, but he seems to be looking ahead to Miami’s Week 14 matchup against Justin Herbert and the Los Angeles Chargers.

As for Dilfer, he was recently named head coach of the football team at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. It’s his first experience as a college coach, and he’s surely hoping that he can have the same success that he had at Lipscomb Academy.

Maybe he’ll even try to convince Tagovailoa to stop by and chat with his new players sometime during the offseason to give them some valuable advice.

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David is a University of Maryland graduate who grew up most of his life in Miami. He has experience in writing, editing and video production, and he's excited to be able to contribute to Dolphin Nation.