DAVIE, Fla. – Miami Dolphins rookie Tua Tagovailoa is hoping to get back under center this weekend after missing his first game since being named the team’s starting quarterback.
Tua missed last Sunday’s win over the New York Jets due to an injury to the thumb on his throwing hand.
He was on the practice field Wednesday, officially listed as a limited participant according to the team’s injury report.
Speaking to the media after practice, Tagovailoa expressed his desire to play while understanding that its ultimately out of his control.
“I’m feeling good,” he said. “As a competitor, you always want to go out there and you want to be able to play. But (Coach Flores) and our medical staff, I would say they have the best interests for us. I would say they wouldn’t put me out there if they felt like it would be harmful for myself. I’m just taking it one day at a time and trusting those guys.”
Pressed about how the injury happened, Tagovailoa wouldn’t say whether or not he hit his thumb on the helmet of a teammate, only that it happened while making a throw.
“I got my hand dinged up when I tried to make a pass,” he said.
Tagovailoa was working Wednesday with his left hand and thumb wrapped, but he was still able to throw the ball.
It’s obviously an adjustment, but perhaps not one that would keep him from playing this week.
“I had to wrap my hand and just get used to the wrap and whatnot,” Tua said. “Other than that, I’m just trying to get into the rhythm again with some of the guys and continue to learn from (Ryan Fitzpatrick), continue to learn from coaches.”
Tua is hopeful he’ll be back on the field Sunday when Miami hosts the Cincinnati Bengals.
Head Coach Brian Flores was also asked about Tagovailoa’s recovery and of course, whether he’d be able to play this week.
“Tua’s been rehabbing, he’s been getting treatment,” Flores said. “He’s working hard to get back in there. Again, I wish I had a crystal ball to tell you he’s going to practice fully; but we’ve got to get out there and do that before we can say that. He’s doing everything he can, and we’ll evaluate it as we go.”
If Tua can’t go on Sunday, it’ll be veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick back in the driver’s seat for Miami.
Against the Jets last weekend, Fitzpatrick completed 24-of-39 passes for 257 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions.
He’s won each of his last three starts for the Dolphins, combining to throw for 798 yards and eight touchdowns during the 3-game stretch.