2020 NFL Draft: Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa Scouting Report
Career Stats (32 Games): 7442 passing yards, 87 passing touchdowns, 11 interceptions, 69.3% completion percentage, 340 rushing yards, 9 rushing touchdowns
2019 Stats (9 Games): 2840 passing yards, 33 passing touchdowns, 3 interceptions, 71.4% completion percentage, 17 rushing yards, 2 rushing touchdowns
Tua Tagovailoa is one of the most interesting prospects in this 2020 NFL Draft class, not just the 2020 quarterback class. Before this Mississippi State game, Tagovailoa was the 2nd best quarterback in college football and was going to be a top pick. In the Mississippi State game when Alabama was up 35-7 in the first half, Tagovailoa was still in the game commanding the offense. Tagovailoa was running outside the pocket when he was hit and taken down awkwardly. The training staff came out instantly. Tua had a season-ending dislocated right hip, sometimes this injury is career-ending. That’s why this is the most interesting prospect in this 2020 NFL Draft class.
Tua Tagovailoa Strengths
If I had to use one word to describe Tagovailoa’s play as a quarterback, it is that he is so smooth with the ball in his hands. When Tagovailoa is in the pocket, he is not fazed at all by the pressure in his face. Tagovailoa steps up in the pocket effortlessly. He also delivers the ball with an extremely nice touch and with extreme accuracy in all the levels of the field.
Fun fact for all of you, Tagovailoa’s completion percentage has increased in each of his last three seasons and also his interception rate has fallen every season as well. That’s because he is scanning the field and going through his progressions better. His decision making with football has improved each and every year as well.
I think what sets Tua above from Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert and Utah State quarterback Jordan Love is that he has excellent ball placement. Tagovailoa’s deep ball is one of the best balls I have ever seen from a college prospect. The way he can drop the ball over his receiver shoulders downfield or even down the sidelines with crazy consistency.
Tua Tagovailoa Weaknesses
I think we all know this, but the biggest concern or if you want to call weakness with Tua is that he is injury prone. Recently, if you have not heard, Tua fractured his right hip that ended his college season. Throughout Tagovailoa’s career, he has struggled to stay healthy.
Tagovailoa has surgery on both of his ankles at separate times throughout his career. One of the ankle injuries that Tua dealt with, decreased his mobility to move around in the pocket and dropped his rushing yards per rush down a whole 1.5 from 2017 to 2018.
Tua does everything right on the field but the biggest red flag that I saw during film study was his arm strength. His deep ball is deadly but sometimes with the lack of velocity, the defensive back was able to make up ground on those throws. If Tua can work on his velocity and stay healthy, then he will be one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL for a long time.
Tua Tagovailoa Projection
The best fit for Tua would be to go to the Los Angeles Chargers. The Chargers already have weapons in Hunter Henry, Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, Austin Ekeler, and if the Chargers resign him, Melvin Gordon. I think the Detroit Lions will trade down in the draft and in the perfect world, I think the Chargers would love to move up in the draft to get their guy in Tua Tagovailoa. If there are not any trades, Tua will be a Top-10 pick regardless.
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