Everything that happened Thursday night in Cincinnati seemed irrelevant at this point Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was knocked to the ground in the second quarter in such a way that you knew there was a serious problem. Tua remained alone. The team lined up beside him as he departed on the stretcher. He was taken to the nearby University of Cincinnati Hospital, and the Dolphins announced that he was “conscious and moving in all limbs.”
It’s every footballer’s nightmare, which is compounded by questions that started last Sunday when Tua returned after what the team had initially announced as a head injury. It must have been this way when he felt dizzy after his head bounced off the pitch. But Tua got back into the game, announced that it was actually a problem behind, and well, an NFL neurologist let him come back with the thought that he didn’t have a concussion.
The players’ union, however, announced that it was launching an investigation, suggesting that things looked as strange as they played out. And … well, four days later, Tua was thrown to the ground by defensive Cincinnati liner Josh Tupou and he suffered from what seemed to be a serious problem. Let the facts emerge about the state of Tua. The good news: he was expected to be released from the hospital and return with the team to South Florida. But there will be a few more questions about the last four days and the Tua award. It focuses on a simple question that will put the NFL and the dolphins under a microscope: Should Tua play Thursday night?
2. Quote of the night: Former Tua Dolphins teammate Ryan Fitzpatrick said during a hiatus at Amazon with Tony Gonzalez and Richard Sherman: “We’ve all played a lot of soccer, but it’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever seen.”
3. Tweet of the evening: The league announced that protocol was followed on Sunday’s Tua exam. The NFLPA investigation has yet to start. But others in the medical community are taking part. From Chris Nowiński, a neurologist who tweeted: “This is a disaster. Pray for Tua. Release medical staff and coaches. I foresaw it and I hate to be right. Two concussions and five days can kill someone. It could end your career. How are we so stupid in 2022. “
OK for the game:
4. Game player: Cincinnati Vonn Bell security with two interceptions. Teddy Bridgewater entered Tua in the second quarter and completed six of the first seven passes for 71 yards, a touchdown and a quarterback of 148.5. So there was no rust from sitting for weeks. There was, however, an expensive interception as he pushed the Dolphins to a future touchdown in the fourth quarter. On the second and tenth at Cincinnati 26, Safety Bell scored his second intercept on the 9-yard line and returned to Miami 45.
5. Defense of dolphins he expected to be tired after playing 90-pay against Buffalo on Sunday. When Cincinnati took the opening possession 75 yards down the field to a touchdown, it seemed to reinforce the idea. But the defense didn’t break that night, and until Xavien Howard left, he was raiding Cincinnati. Example: Cincinnati ran the ball 28 times for 69 yards (average 2.5 yards). The problem was, he couldn’t get off the field again. After Buffalo beat 9 out of 16 in their third relegation, Cincinnati beat 8 out of 15. Such numbers encourage long runs.
6. When the Cincinnati Tee Higgins receiver moved deep into the second quarter for a touchdown from 59 yards, focused again on the corner of Xavien Howard. You put him on an island like dolphins this year, and he’ll be beaten sometimes, especially when he’s struggling with a groin problem, and then he comes out of the game with a leg problem. As Al Michaels of Amazon said, “Don’t be afraid of Howard tonight.” Howard has been the best Dolphins player in the last few years, so the report of a Higgins touchdown was not uncommon. Both Dolphins bodyguards moved to the other side during this game to help a more inexperienced corner (Nik Needham, Kaher Kohou or Keon Crossen, where Ja’Marr Chase and Tyler Boyd receivers were working. This left Howard alone and Higgins ran inside. End Zone Of course, when Howard quit the game in the second half, Joe Burrow started taking the Dolphins apart.
7. How did Kansas City get rid of Tyreek Hill? He was the best player on the pitch in all four games that year. On Thursday night, his 64-yard catch from Bridgewater set the Dolphins on the 5-yard line at Bengals in the third quarter. They just got a goal out of it. But he dived into the game earlier and Tua undermined him. He also shifted the defenses all night, making room for others in a way that showed how afraid of him they were being struck. There is clearly the Dolphin MVP for four games.
8. Dolphins running game remains a problem. Where was he most of the night? This is a game Mike McDaniel had to play in order to gobble up some clock and keep his defenses to the side. Then, with the loss of Tua, it only added to the idea. For three quarters, the Dolphins ran 40 yards by 15 catches (average 2.7 yards). Cincinnati has good running defense, finishing eighth in the league but without the best defensive gear, DJ Reader. The dolphins ran for the first three weeks for 65, 86 and 41 yards. Its not so many. Playing in a statement: Third and an inch in their 34, Chase Edmonds gets thrown for a yard loss and Dolphins punt. In the fourth quarter, Raheem Mostert slowed down several times and finished with 15 shots for 69 yards.
9. Quick hits:
* It looks like former Dophins coaches are everywhere, but Cincinnati’s best coaches are Zac Taylor, former Dophins quarterback coach under Joe Philbin, and defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo, former secondary coach.
* Dolphins kicking Jason Sanders scored 146 points from 148 extra points in his career before leaving Thursday night off the goal post just before half-time. This kept Cincinnati’s lead 14-12 ahead of the break.
10. Next Week: Dolphins in the New York Jets on October 9. After a short break, the Dolphins head to the Meadowlands to play 1-2 Jets. Playmaker Zach Wilson is set to return to Sunday’s game against Pittsburgh after missing a start in his first four games. After a tough New England opening schedule in Baltimore, Buffalo, and Thursday night in Cincinnati, the Jets mark the start of a schedule that takes the pressure off the Dolphins. After the Jets, the Dolphins play Minnesota and Pittsburgh at home before heading to Detroit and Chicago.
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