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Dolphins coach: Tagovailoa isn’t ready to take over as starting QB

Tua Tagovailoa, the Saint Louis School graduate who is considered a potential franchise quarterback, was drafted with the fifth overall pick by the Miami Dolphins but has yet to take a snap. AP file photo

The Associated Press

MIAMI — Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores says Tua Tagovailoa needs more time to be groomed for the job he was drafted to fill.

“As far as him being a starter, we just don’t feel like he’s ready there just yet,” Flores said Wednesday.

Ryan Fitzpatrick will remain the starter Sunday at San Francisco for the Dolphins, even though they’re 1-3 and lost last week at home to Seattle.

Tagovailoa, the Saint Louis School graduate who is considered a potential franchise quarterback, was drafted with the fifth overall pick but has yet to take a snap.

“Right now we feel like Fitz gives us the best chance to win,” Flores said.

Limited game snaps for Tagovailoa as a backup to speed his development aren’t likely.

“I wouldn’t be in favor of something like that,” Flores said. “There are so many things pertaining to the team that you don’t want to do something for one specific person.”

Fitzpatrick is 56-86-1 as a starter for eight teams. He smiled when asked about his reaction to Dolphins fans clamoring for his backup.

“I mean, this has been my career,” Fitzpatrick said. “I guess if anybody is used to being in this situation, it would be me. I just try to be very myopic and go about my business.”

Tagovailoa has done all the right things since joining the Dolphins in April, Flores said. Like all 2020 rookies, he was hurt by the cancellation of the exhibition season and offseason practices because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“He has to keep doing what he’s doing,” Flores said. “He’s working, he’s practicing well. He’s learning every day, he’s getting better every day. If he just continues to do what he’s doing, he’s on the right trajectory.”

Two of the four quarterbacks taken in the first round of this year’s draft — the Bengals’ Joe Burrow and the Chargers’ Justin Herbert — are already starting and played well Sunday. The other, Jordan Love of the Packers, has yet to play as Aaron Rodgers’ backup.

While No. 1 overall pick Burrow was expected to start right away, Herbert was pressed into duty in Week 2 with Tyrod Taylor injured.

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