Former NFL GM Mike Lombardi claims Tua Tagovailoa doesn’t have “it”

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

According to former NFL General Manager Mike Lombardi does believe that Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has “it.” Tagovailoa did have several good games since he took over for veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick early in the season.

However, the past few games, Tagovailoa has been benched at some point in the games. Yet, head coach Bryan Flores is still committed to the fifth overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa looks on before his team faces the Las Vegas Raiders
Tua Tagovailoa looks on before his team faces the Las Vegas Raiders (Photo by the Miami Dolphins/Instagram)

When Tagovailoa was benched, Fitzpatrick came in to replace him. The veteran signal caller even guided the Dolphins to a win over the Las Vegas Raiders on December 26th with a late field goal.

Related: Is Mark Ingram nearing the end of his tenure in Baltimore?

Despite Tagovailoa’s success, Lombardi is not a fan.

“Tell me what he does elitely with the football,” Lombardi said on his latest episode of “The GM Shuffle” podcast. “He doesn’t have an elite arm. He doesn’t have elite quickness. He doesn’t have elite size… They said it on the broadcast, he has ‘it.’ Like, what the f–k is ‘it?’ I want to know what ‘it’ is… like, What is ‘it?!’ I wanna know what the f–k ‘it’ is.”

In the win over the Raiders, Tagovailoa had one of his worst performances of his rookie campaign. He went 17 of 27 for 94 passing yards.

Related: Bucs dominate the short-handed Lions to clinch playoff berth

He also had one touchdown pass against one of the worst defensive units in the NFL. The Raiders were in their second game with Rod Marinelli as their interim defensive coordinator.

Paul Guenther — who had began the season as their defensive coordinator — was fired on December 13th.

“Every quarterback looks good against the Raiders defense,” Lombardi said. “To me that was the biggest indictment. Tua couldn’t even look good against the Raiders defense.”

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Since being named the Dolphins starter, he has had three games, where he did not surpass 100 passing yards in a game. Besides the 94 passing yards against the Raiders, Tagovailoa also had 83 passing yards in a loss to the Denver Broncos on November 22nd.

In his first career NFL start, Tagovailoa had 93 passing yards in a win over the Los Angeles Rams on November 1st.

“He averaged 4.27 yards per attempt,” Lombardi said. “The best game of his career was when he played against Arizona, he averaged 8.86. I mean he’s at 6.26 (on the season). He doesn’t make any plays down the field, and the last three weeks, he has been sacked nine times because he doesn’t have elite quickness, or elite power to get out of the way.”

Related: Lions forced into rare situation with COVID-19 tracing

Despite Lombardi’s opinion, Flores has already said that Tagovailoa will start the final game of the regular season on Sunday. He’s starting with the Dolphins season on the line.

If the Dolphins defeat the Buffalo Bills, they secure a spot in the playoffs. But if they loss to the Bills — who may elect to play the starters on a limited basis — there’s a chance that their season may be over.

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