Tua Tagovailoa will be the Miami Dolphins’ Week 8 starter vs. the Los Angeles Rams.
Despite playing some excellent ball throughout the season, and especially in the last few weeks, the Miami Dolphins have decided to make the change at starting quarterback by going with first-round pick Tua Tagovailoa over journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick. The Dolphins are in second place in the AFC East at 3-3, only a game back of the Buffalo Bills for first place entering the bye week.
The Fantasy Footballers were just as shocked on Tuesday morning as most of us were. While we all know Tagovailoa is the future of the Dolphins franchise, Fitzpatrick had been consistently a top-12 fantasy football quarterback throughout the season. While he has struggled at times, he’s been a big reason the Dolphins have won three of their last four games. Is this the right move?
If there was ever a time to pivot off Fitzpatrick to Tagovailoa, this would be the time. The Dolphins will be on bye in Week 7 and will get to play at home in Week 8. However, the opponent they’re going up against will be the Los Angeles Rams, who have the best defensive player in all of football starring along their defensive line in Aaron Donald. The Rams are playing well, too.
Tua Tagovailoa will be up against it in his first two weeks as a starter.
It doesn’t get any easier in Week 9, as the Dolphins will face the Arizona Cardinals, who have surprisingly one of the best defenses in the NFL. While those are two tough teams to go up against right out the gate, things ease in the Dolphins’ next four games vs. non-playoff contenders in the Los Angeles Chargers, the Denver Broncos, the New York Jets and the Cincinnati Bengals.
Expect Tagovailoa to have a baptism by fire in his first two starts before the schedule softens up heading into early December. From a fantasy perspective, he’s not worth starting until at least Week 10 due to the matchups. We also need to pay close attention to who become his favorite receiving targets and how much offensive coordinator Chan Gailey will lean on the ground game.
Expect Myles Gaskin to get more touches to help bring along the rookie quarterback. With accuracy being Tagovailoa’s greatest strength, this may have help him develop a strong rapport with Dolphins’ No. 1 wide receiver DeVante Parker. It may manifest during the fantasy playoff run. For now, look for him to become tight with tight end Mike Gesicki as his passing safety valve.