Miami Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa Enters Concussion Protocol… Again

Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is being treated for yet another concussion after he banged his head during a game against the Green Bay Packers on Christmas.

Tua Tagovailoa Miami Dolphins
Tua Tagovailoa Miami Dolphins
The Green Bay Packers try to slow down Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa during a game on Christmas at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. (Image: Getty)

Tagovailoa played the entire game for the Dolphins during a 26-20 loss against the Packers. It marked a fourth-straight loss for the Dolphins, who are on the verge of missing the postseason.

On Monday, Tagovailoa self-reported his symptoms to the medical staff and team doctors sent him into the NFL’s concussion protocol.

“I just want guys to really be done right by, by the information we have, the science and all the medical expertise that we rely on,” said head coach Mike McDaniel. “I care very deeply about each and every player, I take that very serious. We want Tua to get healthy and have peace of mind in that regard. It’s about the human being and making sure he’s squared away.”

The Dolphins are 8-7 this season and currently occupy the #7 seed in the AFC as the third Wild Card team. The Dolphins have a 62% chance to secure an AFC Wild Card berth, according to a projection by FiveThirtyEight. They play two more games, including a road game against the New England Patriots in Week 17, and then they host the New York Jets in Week 18.

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Third Concussion for Tagovailoa

This is technically the third concussion of the season for Tagovailoa, but only the second one that was officially reported.

In Week 3, Tagovailoa hit his head on the turf in a game against the Buffalo Bills. He clearly exhibited signs of a concussion when he struggled to walk back to the huddle. At the time, the Dolphins staff said he suffered a back injury and he returned to the game. However, the official story about a back injury contradicted the video footage which showed a wobbly Tagovailoa getting assistance from teammates.

A couple of days later, the Dolphins played the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday Night Football in Week 4, and Tagovailoa suffered two concussions within a four-day span.

Josh Tupou from the Bengals hit Tagovailoa during a sack attempt. Tagovailoa hit the back of his head on the turf and was knocked out by Tupou. His arms quickly froze up, and the medical staff was called onto the field. Tagovailoa got whisked away in a medical cart, and rushed to a local hospital.

Tagovailoa only missed two games after the incident in the Bengals game. He returned to action in Week 7, and the Dolphins went on a five-game winning streak.

In 13 games this season, Tagovailoa completed 64.8% of his passes for 3,548 yards. He threw 26 touchdowns and had only eight interceptions.

Teddy Bridgewater Getting Ready for Week 17

Backup quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is taking all the snaps with the first team in practice this week. He’s expected to start against the Patriots on Sunday. It seems likely that Tagovailoa is done for the season, and the NFLPA suggested the Dolphins shut him down completely, including the postseason.

The Dolphins cannot afford to lose any more games this season, but are eager to get off the schneid with a much-needed victory against the Patriots on Sunday. Their playoff hopes could be ultimately decided with Bridgewater at quarterback in the final two games of the season. It would be disappointing to bubble the playoffs after starting the season with an 8-3 record.

Bridgewater is 0-1 as a starter for the Dolphins this season. He also suffered a concussion in his first start replacing Tagovailoa in a Week 5 game against the New York Jets.

Skylar Thompson, a rookie third-string quarterback from Kansas State, finished the game against the Jets. Thompson started in Week 6 against the Minnesota Vikings when the Dolphins had two quarterback in the concussion protocol.

Bridgewater appeared in four games this season. He completed 61.7% of his passes for 522 yards, three touchdowns, and three interceptions.

Bridgewater has a 33-31 record as a starter with five different teams since entering the league in 2014. He was a late first-round pick by the Minnesota Vikings in 2014, and went 17-11 as a starter before suffering an ACL injury in 2017. He also played for the New Orleans Saints, New York Jets, Carolina Panthers, and Denver Broncos before joining the Dolphins this season.

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