MIAMI – Dolphins head coach Brian Flores is not focused on all the talk around quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.
Instead, the coach is working to build on their relationship and improve in the quarterback’s second season.
Flores said Thursday, “I think we here believe in developing players at all positions. I think with an offseason, with OTAs, with more reps, more repetitions; like any player, I think they develop and get better. I think he feels the same way. Tua and I had lunch yesterday. We talked about his family and I think a lot of that is- that development is about building a relationship. He’s doing well. He’s confident. I’m confident in him. I’m looking forward to this offseason.”
Flores talked about Tua’s first season, “I think that when you think about his situation last year coming off the hip injury, we kind of threw him in the fire there in Week 7 or Week 8- I’m not sure exactly what week it was. He started nine games. I thought he made a lot improvement throughout the course of the season. He had some ups, had some downs, like all of the rookies and like any rookie. I’m really excited about this- that Year 1 to Year 2 jump and being more comfortable, even down here in South Florida. He’s got a place. That rookie year, you’ve got a lot going on. You’ve got to get a house, you’ve got to get a car, you’ve got to move to a whole new city. There are so many things going on.”
Asked about backup quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, Flores said, “Obviously we have a lot of respect and admiration for him. He’s tough, he’s smart, he’s competitive. He loves to play. He really embodies all the characteristics we’re looking for here. Honestly, we’d love to have him back; but I think this is a very unique year from a cap standpoint.”