Dolphins Urged to Make $180M Decision on QB Tua Tagovailoa

Dolphins struggle in cold weather.

Getty Dolphins struggle in cold weather.

The Miami Dolphins face a looming decision on what to do with quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, and one analyst believes they will reach a “reasonable” one.

The quarterback is coming off a season where he led the league in passing yards and earned a Pro Bowl nod, but questions remain about his durability and ability to get the team to the next level. While general manager Chris Grier has said that the team wants Tagovailoa in Miami for the “long term,” Pro Football Network’s Adam H. Beasley predicted that the team would hold off on giving him a mega deal like the one Joe Burrow landed.

Dolphins Predicted to Give Reasonable Deal With an Out

Grieg said in his season-ending press conference that the team has been in contact with Tagovailoa’s agent on a contract extension. The quarterback just completed his fourth NFL season and earned some early MVP buzz this season before the team fell off late in the season, losing three of their last five games and squandering a three-game division lead before a wild-card exit.

Beasley predicted that the Dolphins would hold the upper hand in negotiations, with the option to hold onto Tagovailoa’s rights for the next three years at $135 million thanks to a fifth-year option and the potential for two franchise tags.

Beasley wrote that the Dolphins would stay away from a deal the size of Burrow’s five-year, $275 million extension, giving Tagovailoa a smaller but still significant commitment.

“And so a reasonable figure for a long-term deal for Tua (which allows the Dolphins a moderately painful out after 2025) is more like this: Four years, $180 million with $100 million guaranteed,” Beasley wrote. “That would put him in line with the inflation-adjusted contracts of Matthew Stafford ($46.6 million AAV if the salary cap when he signed was the $242.5 million it’s expected to be in 2024) and Daniel Jones ($43.2 million).”

The Dolphins will have some other tough decisions on how to best spend their money this offseason, with key players headed to free agency including defensive tackle Christian Wilkins and linemen Connor Williams and Robert Hunt.

Grier said he had a good conversation with Wilkins and had hope that the team could keep some of their key pieces intact for next season.

“Our goal is to keep as many good players here as we can,” he said, via the Sun-Sentinel.

Mike McDaniel Speaks Out on Tua

Though there is no timeline to a contract extension, the Dolphins have remained committed to Tagovailoa. Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel addressed Tagovailoa’s play during his season-ending presser, praising his growth but saying he wants to see more from the 25-year-old quarterback.

“I just want to see him make sure the curve continues to be exponential in his growth,” McDaniel said, via the Sun-Sentinel. “We’ve seen, at every stretch of the way, him improving. That doesn’t mean it’s void of a result that isn’t desired, but what we’ve seen is him learn from all the things that he goes through. I think that’s the one thing that I can say, in my two years of experience with him, is he’s as good of a learner as I’ve ever seen.”

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