Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has had an outstanding season so far and continues to grow as a player. It seems like yesterday when some people felt the Dolphins drafted the wrong quarterback and should have taken Justin Herbert over Tagovailoa. Well, Tagovailoa is silencing those skeptics. There were also questions about whether he had a good enough arm to play in the NFL. Tagovailoa has been making big plays down the field week in and week out since Mike McDaniel became head coach. My biggest question about Tagovailoa coming out of Alabama was whether he could stay healthy because he has always had the injury label. Whether it be his ankle, hand, or broken hip, last year, people were concerned about his concussions. Well, so Tagovailoa has done that this year: knock on wood.

However, now is the biggest test of Tagovailoa’s career as he must lead the Dolphins to the final three games and prove that he can guide this team to the playoffs and have a chance to win the Super Bowl. Tagovailoa has yet to play well against better competition this year, and that must change. Tagovailoa isn’t a big, physical quarterback with a big-time arm and can run around, like Josh Allen or Patrick Mahomes. He is an undersized quarterback who can move around if needed but is accurate and throws with great timing and anticipation. He will need those qualities to help this team make the playoffs in the final three games.

Whether it’s fair or not, quarterbacks are judged by how they do in late-season games and getting their team to the post-season. Tagovailoa still needs to do that. I know he won most of the games last year but missed the regular season’s final two games, as well as the playoffs, due to a concussion. We have yet to see him play in these big games. Yes, he played in big games at Alabama, but that’s college and not the pros. Most people said he won because Alabama had the most talent, and anyone could win at quarterback with those players. That might be true, but other than Tagovailoa and Jalen Hurts, Alabama has yet to have a quarterback come into the league and become a franchise quarterback.

This is where Tagovailoa must take the next step. He is the most talented quarterback the Dolphins have had since Dan Marino retired, and the team has been searching for their franchise signalcaller. Tagovailoa is developing into that, but now he must lead this team in big games. It’s been a big criticism of the Dolphins this year that they haven’t beaten any good teams with a winning record, and Tagovailoa is part of that. They can prove the doubters wrong, and Tagovailoa must lead the Dolphins now. If the Dolphins stumble and don’t make the playoffs or go one and out again, this will be a disappointing season and one of the biggest collapses in franchise history. This team has too much talent to collapse. Tua is too talented not to step up in these big games. This is the time of year that quarterbacks earn their money and their reputation. Tagovailoa has a chance to exercise those demons. If he can’t do it, the Dolphins may have to look to another quarterback as early as next year.

I think Tua can do it, and I believe he will. It’s time for him to show it and take his game to another level the way all Dolphins fans want.