Former National Champion signal-caller Tua Tagovailoa took to a podium in Tuscaloosa on Monday afternoon to announce his intentions of forgoing his senior year at Alabama, opting to throw his name into the 2020 NFL Draft.
Tagovailoa is one of the most highly sought after quarterback prospects to come along the collegiate ranks in recent memory. He posses near-elite accuracy, while his mobility and leadership have had many scouts and fans liken him to Super Bowl champion Russell Wilson.
However, a recent hip injury has put his NFL Draft prospects and professional future in question. The one-time projected first-overall pick has the potential of falling out of the top-10 come late-April. Yet, it may end up being the best thing to ever happen to the quarterback.
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Top 5 Landing Spots For Tua in 2020 NFL Draft
Honorable Mentions: Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Indianapolis Colts, New England Patriots
5. Jacksonville Jaguars
Minshew Mania captured the hearts of Duval County in 2019, however, it seemed to fizzle out during the final stretch of the regular season. Minshew still likely deserves a starting opportunity in 2020, and at the very least is a top-end backup in this league. Jacksonville has a 1,000-yard receiver in DJ Chark and a three-down workhorse in Leonard Fournette to ease the load on Tua.
4. Carolina Panthers
This is arguably the most intriguing team on this list. The Panthers were seemingly ready to move on from Cam Newton this offseason. That was until Kyle Allen faltered down the stretch. The team could opt to try and rekindle the relationship between them and the former Heisman Trophy winner, or they can opt to go their separate ways.
Triplets consisting of Tua Tagovailoa, Christian McCaffrey, and DJ Moore would automatically shoot to the top of the most lethal young corps in all of football. Tua would add accuracy in the passing game that they’ve been missing for years. Plus, with rumors of Josh McDaniels intrigued by the job opening in Carolina, Tua could be further developed by the same coach that helped Tom Brady become the GOAT.
3. Los Angeles Chargers
The Chargers had an extremely devastating 2019 season. Yet, they still possess one of the most talented rosters in all of football. The reason why they drop to three on this list is the fact that their offensive line is arguably the weakest link on their team, not something you want to hear when you’re selecting a QB with an injury-prone tag. With that said Austin Ekeler, Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, and Hunter Henry are a phenomenal arsenal for a young signal-caller to grow with.
2. Miami Dolphins
It almost seems as if the pairing between Tua and the Dolphins is inevitable. Miami has seemingly been planing to have Tagovailoa as the quarterback for the better part of two years now. The Dolphins may seem like a crapshoot organization at first look, but they’d make for a great landing spot for the former Crimson Tide QB. DeVante Parker has developed into a legitimate WR1 in this league. Brian Flores is one of the best up and coming coaches in all of football. Yet, most importantly, Ryan Fitzpatrick has just enough magic left in his veins to run the ‘Phins offense while Tua works his way back from injury.
1. New Orleans Saints
The Saints would undoubtedly have to trade up in the first round if they have any hopes of acquiring Tua in the 2020 NFL Draft. However, if you look at recent trends, the majority of QBs we consider to be franchise cornerstones in the NFL were selected after a team traded up to draft them. Patrick Mahomes, Deshaun Watson, Carson Wentz, and Jared Goff were all drafted after a team moved up in the round to select them.
Drew Brees will be entering the second to last year of his contract in 2020, and at 40 years of age, he’s not getting any younger. Teddy Bridgewater will be offered a plethora of starting opportunities outside of New Orleans this offseason. Though Taysom Hill is an electric playmaker, he is still a question mark as a legitimate quarterback in this league. Tua would be able to sit an entire season, allowing him to get back to 100% health and learn behind a future Hall of Famer in Brees.
Pairing Tua with Sean Peyton, Alvin Kamara, and Michael Thomas seems like a match made in heaven, and one that could prolong the Saints Super Bowl window.
READ NEXT: Tua Tagovailoa’s Latest Injury Updates & Return Timeline
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