Tua Tagovailoa was poor in Miami’s 34-3 loss to the Tennessee Titans, who won AFC South with the win on Sunday.
With a postseason spot on the line where the stakes could not have been higher, the Dolphins’ starting quarterback dropped.
He fumbled with the ball three times during a cold and rainy match. He threw an interception and was lucky to get two more possible choices dropped.
Tagovailoa was out of plenty on a handful of throws that could have extended drives and produced more than three points for the match.
The bottom line is undeniable: Miami’s sophomore quarterback failed the Dolphins when this team needed him the most.
But what is also undeniable is that this team, this franchise, these coaches have failed Tagovailoa all season, in all aspects and areas one would think a young quarterback needs support.
If there’s one thing I’m taking with me from this 2021 season – which will end with a pointless home game against the playoff-bound New England Patriots (10-6) – it is that the Dolphins (8-8) and their fan base have a foot in and one foot out on Tagovailoa.
If I were him, I would consider whether I will be here in 2022 and in the long run.
Just think of all that has happened this season that has seemed like a season-long unintentional attempt to sabotage the former Alabama standout.
I’m not even talking about the Deshaun Watson courtship.
I’m talking about football.
This co-ordinator approach has been a big flop, considering how much this offense went back in the season after Chan Gailey stopped or was fired, depending on who you talk to. Miami ranks 25th in yards per. match (307.6) and has an average of 19.3 points per game. match (ranked 24th). By comparison, the Dolphins last season were ranked 22nd in yards per game. match (339) and had an average of 25.3 points per. match (placed 15th).
The Dolphins offense ranks below the league average in all categories except interceptions, third-down and fourth-down conversions and red-zone success. And they can thank Tagovailoa for being overboard there.
If you’re Aaron Rodgers, Russell Wilson, Jimmy Garoppolo or Watson, the top four quarterbacks likely to be shopped by their team this offseason, you’ll have to look at the Dolphins with a smelly face because of it. , they have around. Quarterbacks.
The offensive line is awful, arguably the worst in the NFL despite three seasons of trying to build it. Tagovailoa’s pocket presence has helped them look like something respectable, but there are still a handful of plays each game that will ruin a series or a game.
And so it has been for three seasons in a row under coach Brian Flores, who is on his fourth offensive line coach in three years. He’s likely to add a fifth to that list this offseason because it’s pretty clear that Lemuel Jeanpierre, who is in his first season leading an offensive line in the NFL as a position coach, is in at all.
With the exception of right guard Robert Hunt, all players on that unit have struggled and do not pass the sniff test as an NFL starter.
Their games are part of the reason Miami’s running game has been a joke all season, averaging 85.5 rushing yards per game. match (ranked 31st) and 3.4 yards per. carry. This is also a third season in a row with matches in that area.
General manager Chris Grier should be embarrassed that two tailbacks added from the waiver thread around mid-season – Duke Johnson and Phillip Lindsay – are clearly the unit’s two best talents. Grier has treated tailbacks as an afterthought despite the running game’s significant role as a catalyst for a Run-Pass-Option offense used by Dolphins.
Jaylen Waddle has been this team’s only reliable and consistent recipient. The 2021 first-round pick is three receptions left to set the NFL’s rookie reception record and 12 yards from becoming the 11th 1,000-yard receiver for the Dolphins in franchise history.
But every other receiver in this injured-decimated unit has been a disappointment, forcing tight-end Mike Gesicki to play a receiver role most of the season.
While a healthy DeVante Parker has the potential to be a playmaker, healthy and Parker are not two words that are often paired. And this was his third worst NFL season.
As for the rest of the unit, we need to place Will Fuller, Albert Wilson and Preston Williams on the back of a milk carton. Their disappearance has forced Tagovailoa to lean heavily on Isaiah Ford, a journeyman, and Mack Hollins, a special team contributor, for much of this season.
That means the Dolphins clearly did not reach the goal of last offseason, which was to add more playmakers to Tagovailoa.
So to sum up Miami’s offense, Tagovailoa works with one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL, offset by one of the worst running games in the league, and has one of the weakest receiving corps in the NFL.
Still, do people want me to believe that Tagovailoa is the one holding this franchise back?
I do not buy it and will not do it until this team puts better talents around him and he shows that it is him and not the coach, the talent or the decision making that holds this offensive back.