Are the Miami Dolphins leaning toward Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert?

April 3, 2020

So much for Tank for Tua in South Beach.

According to a report from Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller, the Miami Dolphins could be favoring Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert as the preferred choice at No. 5 overall.

Dolphins fans might want to begin thinking about life without Tua Tagovailoa as their quarterback after months of “Tank for Tua” talk. I’m told by multiple league sources that the Dolphins aren’t convinced Tua is the best option and could instead target Oregon’s Justin Herbert. The situation is fluid, but the buzz around the league is that Herbert has the most fans in the Dolphins’ draft room.

Tagovailoa has long been connected to the Dolphins as the quarterback who would lead their return to legitimacy after former first-rounders Ryan Tannehill and Josh Rosen (albeit via trade) failed to establish themselves over the last few seasons as legitimate answers at the game’s most important position.

Tagovailoa began the 2019 college football season as the presumptive No. 1 prospect in the country but a November 19 hip injury derailed his once-promising draft stock. And while he’s still considered a lock to be a top-10 pick, reports like Miller’s suggest he may have slid to QB3 on teams’ big boards.

The biggest issue impacting Tagovailoa’s draft status is the inability for interested clubs to put him through a full medical exam. As the nation copes with COVID-19, social distancing is preventing the traditional pre-draft process to unfold.

Whoever ends up drafting Tagovailoa will be taking a calculated risk on not only his recovery from November’s injury but also on his longevity as an NFL quarterback. His college resume is littered with multiple lower-body injuries. Will he physically be able to hold up in the pros?

To be fair, that’s a question that can be asked about just about every draft prospect. But injury history weighs heavily in final grades; without an official clean bill of health, Herbert may be viewed as the safer pick who has a very high ceiling of his own.

Remember: It isn’t surprising that Herbert is in this conversation. He, too, was considered one of the best quarterback prospects in the country when the 2019 season got started. There was never a doubt he’d be a top-10 selection, but few expected he’d be drafted before Tagovailoa.

And that may not be what ends up happening. This is lying season, after all, and all bets are off when it comes to teams trying to throw the media and other clubs off their quarterback trail.

Tagovailoa still feels like a safe bet to be the second quarterback drafted and the Dolphins are still the most logical landing spot. But as we’ve come to know with the NFL Draft, logic is oftentimes thrown out the window.

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