Joe Burrow went No. 1 overall to the Cincinnati Bengals on opening day, leaving Tua Tagovailoa and Justin Herbert on the board for the Dolphins to choose from.
In hindsight, their pick isn’t looking like it’s panning out the way the organization intended it to, and partly to blame is the situation Tagovailoa has found himself in.
The Dolphins have the worst offensive line in the NFL, according to PFF grades.
That doesn’t begin to tell the whole story, however. This Miami offensive line isn’t just the worst in the NFL, but it’s a historically bad unit. The group is allowing the highest pressure rate in the league (43.3% according to PFF’s grading algorithm).
This leads to a paltry average depth of target of 6.9 yards for the second-year quarterback, demonstrating an obvious cause and effect relationship.
So, where better for Tua? I’m glad you asked. I’ve compiled a list of five NFL franchises that would better serve the talent Tagovailoa brings to the table.
5. Houston Texans
The Texans‘ offensive line woes are bad, don’t get me wrong. But it’s not bad enough to be worse than the unit the Dolphins employ.
It could be said that with a good, mobile quarterback, the offensive line would be able to hold its own for at least a little bit longer than Tua is currently used to.
On the flip side, Houston has one of the worst receiving corps in the NFL, which puts them at the bottom of this list.
Houston has more potential for Tua to be successful than Miami, but there are better landing spots for sure.
4. Carolina Panthers
Robby Anderson and DJ Moore are the Carolina Panthers‘ best wide receivers, but overall, the Panthers unit is probably a middle of the pack group.
Likewise, if it weren’t for Taylor Moton, the tackle grading out as the best on the Panthers’ roster, the Carolina offensive line would be downright terrible. In Week 12 against the Dolphins, it could be said that the OL single-handedly lost the game for the Panthers.
While not quite as bad a landing spot as Houston, it’s not that glamorous of an upgrade at this point for Tua.
3. Denver Broncos
I would rate the Denver Broncos’ offensive line in the middle of the pack among NFL teams, which is still significantly better than the current unit he plays behind.
Tackle Garrett Bolles has allowed just five sacks on the year, and according to PFF, is the Broncos’ highest-graded offensive lineman this season.
Beyond that, the wide receiver group is one of the best in the nation.
Bear in mind that the Broncos may have the best receiver corp in terms of the potential landing spots for Tua, but the receivers he has in Miami aren’t scrubs in the slightest.
Courtland Sutton and Jerry Jeudy may be the best duo Tagovailoa has a chance to play with in the future if Miami is in his rearview. He already has a rapport with Jeudy, having thrown numerous touchdown passes to him over three years together at Alabama.
2. Washington Football Team
It’s undeniable that the Washington Football Team has one of the best offensive line groups in the NFL, but they need to bring in one more solid wide receiver to round out the receiving corps.
Most importantly, a new quarterback is detrimental to the success of the organization moving forward because I can’t imagine they see Taylor Heinicke as their franchise quarterback.
Tua is perfect. He would bolster the ranks of former Crimson Tide athletes on a WFT roster that already boasts four, and playing behind one of the best OLs in the league would go a long way in getting Tagovailoa in a groove.
Terry McLaurin gives him a solid receiver to be his first read and Cam Sims is a former Crimson Tide receiver in the fold as well.
1. Pittsburgh Steelers
Where better than Pittsburgh for Tagovailoa? While the weather won’t be near as nice compared to his current home in Miami, it’s the best situation potentially for both parties.
While the offensive line has dealt with a ton of adversity this season, they would be greatly aided by Tua’s legs, a trait they’re certainly not used to in a quarterback.
Chase Claypool is emerging as one the NFL’s best wide receivers, which would prove highly beneficial to Tua. Alabama fans remember the impeccable accuracy that Tagovailoa has, and it hasn’t changed in the NFL.
If given enough time, perhaps just a mere 2.5 seconds, Claypool will be found with the ball in his hands as has occurred so many times this season.
Beef up the OL and get more production from Diontae Johnson and you have yourself a dangerous combination for Tua.
The best part is, the head coach has been around a while, a luxury that hasn’t been afforded to Tua when compared to the short tenure of Brian Flores. The culture is still taking hold in Miami while Pittsburgh has known their culture for several seasons now.
It’s not guaranteed that the Dolphins will move Tua this season, but if it does happen, I’d be a lot happier if he was in a much more favorable situation than his current one.
We will continue to keep you updated on the Crimson Tide alumni repping the script A in the NFL.