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Miami Dolphins exploring ‘all options’ in 2023 QB market, could move away from Tua Tagovailoa

Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa took the steps forward this season that the organization wanted to see out of the former fifth-overall pick. However, it still appears like the front office isn’t ready to make a serious commitment to the 25-year-old passer.

Tagovailoa briefly entered the NFL MVP consideration in 2022, posting one of the highest passer ratings, yards per attempt (8.9) and touchdown rates (6.3%) in the NFL. He played like that quarterback everyone expected when he entered the 2020 NFL Draft, finally looking comfortable with an offense tailored to his strengths.

  • Tua Tagovailoa stats (2022): 105.5 QB rating, 25-8 TD-INT, 64.8% completion rate

Unfortunately, repeated head injuries derailed a breakout season. Tagovailoa was diagnosed with two concussions in 13 games, including one that forced him to leave the field on a stretcher. He also entered the NFL’s concussion protocol three times.

Related: Miami Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa reveals plan to avoid concussions

According to CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson, members of the Dolphins’ organization indicated the front office is exploring all options at quarterback this offseason. Among the possibilities being weighed in Miami is moving on from Tagovailoa.

Miami holds a fifth-year option on Tagovailoa. By May 1, the franchise must decide if it wants to fully guarantee the $23.2 million salary it would owe Tagovailoa in 2024 if it picks up the option. When asked about it at the NFL Combine, neither Mike McDaniel nor general manager Chris Grier would fully commit to exercising the option.

Related: Tua Tagovailoa’s parents address his future

“Like any other player, you factor in every variable. I think it’s important to recognize we have a congruence of interests by the Dolphins and the player, Tua, that we both want him to play at a very high level for a long time for the Miami Dolphins.”

Miami Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel on Tua Tagovailoa’s fifth-year option

Miami would be the best landing spot for any quarterback on the market. McDaniel’s system is made for its signal-caller to thrive and the tandem of Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle is arguably the best receiver duo in the NFL.

Evaluating the quarterback market is the safe choice for the Dolphins’ front office. There is an understanding that the next head injury could end Tagovailoa’s career, a devastating outcome that would rob an athlete of a promising future and leave Miami with long-term issues.

The Dolphins almost certainly won’t swing a blockbuster trade for a high-end starter, but it would be reasonable to add a backup quarterback with years of starting experience who could lead this offense if Tagovailoa goes down again.

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