The Miami Dolphins are off to a perfect start, led by their gun-slinging quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. Fitting for the Dolphins to stay undefeated on the 50th anniversary of the 72 Perfect Season. The Dolphins are 2-0 for the first time since 2018, a season in which the Dolphins would finish 7-9 and eventually part ways with head coach Adam Gase. Even though a quick start can’t guarantee long-term success, this Miami team looks different from the past. The main glaring difference is the quarterback position. Tua put us Dolphin fans on one of the most emotional rollercoasters we have been on since the Miami Miracle. A first half proved the doubters right and had Twitter trolls roasting Tua and the Dolphins’ offense. It wasn’t a pretty start for the guys in the first half. The 103-yard kickoff return instantly put an anchor in our stomachs. At the time, the Dolphins hadn’t won a game in Baltimore since 1997. There was some sense of defeat early for the Dolphins as they went to the locker room down 21, but a slight feeling of hope remained.
We still don’t know what was said in the locker room at halftime. We can only assume that it was inspiring enough for what was about to be done to the Ravens defense in the second half. On the first drive of the second half, Tua drove the ball 12 plays for 75 yards, eventually finding Mike Gesicki in the back of the end zone for a 13-yard toe-tapping touchdown. That would bring the Dolphins back to a 14-point deficit. Down 21 again at the start of the 4th Quarter, Tua would hit Jayleen Waddle for 33 yards, putting the Dolphins in Baltimore territory. Tua would hit Waddle again to put the Dolphins in the red zone. Tua took the next snap, scrambled to his right, and found River Cracraft for a 2-yard touchdown. With just over 12 minutes left in the 4th quarter, Tua had already collected three touchdown passes, and three more were coming his way. These three remaining touchdowns are the most important touchdowns of Tua’s young career. At the time, Tua had only thrown 1 40+ yard touchdown in his career. On the next possession, Tua connected with Tyreek Hill on a 48-yard drop-in-the-basket touchdown. Shortly after, Tua would find Tyreek again for a 60-yard touchdown and run. Most of us couldn’t believe what we saw from Tua, but the elite conversation began on the final drive, Miami down 35-38 with 2 minutes remaining. Everyone knows it requires elite skill to engineer a 2-minute offense to win a game. Tua said give me that crown and let me show you how it’s done. The Dolphins would go six plays for 68 yards in 2 minutes and 4 seconds, capitalizing on a 7-yard game-winning touchdown throw to Jaylen Waddle.
So, just how elite was Tua’s Sunday performance? Let’s review. Tua finished Sunday’s game 36/50 for 469-yards and six touchdowns. A QB passer rating of 124.1 was only sacked once on a blown TE block. Tua matched Dan Marino and Bob Griese’s six touchdowns in a single game for Miami. He also helped the Dolphins tie their second-largest comeback win in franchise history. The legion of zoom, Tyreek Hill, and Jayleen Waddle combined for 22 receptions, 361 yards, and four total touchdowns. All the numbers looked great, but what stood out to me was the perseverance of Tua going into the second half. Mike McDaniel said it best, ‘We can never let our heads down.’ This team is far too capable of being set down in half of football. Tua’s Sunday performance proved to Dolphin fans that we have an elite quarterback on our roster. Tua still has 15 games remaining to continue building his elite status. Tua will face the ultimate test on Sunday when the Buffalo Bills visit Miami. This game could be the turning point for a franchise trying to return to glory.