Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa still in concussion protocol, won't participate in Pro Bowl
Published in Football
Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa remains in concussion protocol a month after entering it, according to a league source, and now will be unable to participate in the Pro Bowl.
Tagovailoa was not among the original selection of three AFC quarterbacks for the NFL’s All-Star exhibition taking place Feb. 2-5, but with the Kansas City Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes and Cincinnati Bengals’ Joe Burrow competing in the AFC Championship Game for a chance to play in the Super Bowl, Tagovailoa essentially clinched a Pro Bowl invitation last weekend as the conference’s first alternate at quarterback. Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen was the third AFC signal-caller initially selected.
Without clearing protocol, however, Tagovailoa would be skipped over for that chance to participate. Along with the source, Tagovailoa’s father, Galu Tagovailoa, told Hawaiian television station KHON this week that the third-year quarterback continues to go through the league’s five-step return-to-play protocol.
Tagovailoa missed the Dolphins’ final two regular-season games and playoff loss at the Bills due to his second diagnosed concussion of the 2022 season. He entered protocol on Dec. 26, a day after finishing a loss to the Green Bay Packers at Hard Rock Stadium where he took a hit to the head against the ground late in the first half but still finished the game, throwing three fourth-quarter interceptions.
Including the playoffs, Tagovailoa has missed a total of five and a half games over the course of the season due to concussion protocol. He missed two other games after exiting the Sept. 29 loss in Cincinnati with a concussion, where he was taken off the field on a stretcher and admitted into University of Cincinnati medical facilities before being discharged and traveling back to South Florida later that night.
Tagovailoa had career highs of 25 touchdowns and eight interceptions in his third NFL season. He also led the league in passer rating (105.5) and yards per attempt (8.9).
This year’s Pro Bowl Games in the NFL substitute the former format of a traditional all-star game with a skills competition and flag football game in Las Vegas.
The Dolphins have affirmed their trust in Tagovailoa as their starter in 2023, which currently stands as the final year of his rookie contract. The team has a May 1 deadline to exercise a fifth-year option of more than $22 million on that rookie deal for 2024.
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