A few weeks ago, the Miami Dolphins made the surprising decision to bench starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick for rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. At the time, the move was puzzling. The Dolphins were coming off of a 24-0 win over the hapless Jets, and Fitzpatrick was playing well.
However, coach Brian Flores was confident in his decision, and it appears that it is paying off over these last two games. The Dolphins are now 5-3, defeating both the Los Angeles Rams and Arizona Cardinals. While Tagovailoa didn’t put up major stats in his debut (93 yards and a touchdown) last week, he didn’t give the game away either.
But on Sunday afternoon against the Cardinals, Tagovailoa showcased the skills that made him fun to watch at Alabama, outdueling Kyler Murray in Miami’s 34-31 win. The rookie quarterback was 20-of-28 for 248 yards and two touchdowns. He also had 35 rushing yards. It was a complete performance from the rook that will get attention from opposing teams and fantasy football managers.
As of now, Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert and Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow have etched their name in stone as must-play QB1’s every week. Herbert has had five games where he’s scored at least 20 fantasy points. Meanwhile, Burrow has had two games where he’s scored at 20 points and four where he’s scored at least 15 points.
Therefore, can we see Tagovailoa rise to those ranks over the last handful of games, and should you put in a waiver claim for him? The answers to both of those questions are yes.
Just like the other rookie QBs, he has pieces around him on offense. Also, he would be a better option than Philip Rivers or Kirk Cousins, for example. Tagovailoa is currently rostered in 24 percent of Yahoo fantasy leagues.
Up next — LA (AFC), @DEN, @NYJ, CIN, KC