The Dolphins’ veteran quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick, was heartbroken about his newfound backup position. Following a blowout win that saw him throw 3 touchdowns, Fitzpatrick surprisingly conceded the starting spot to the rookie Tua Tagovailoa.
In a statement to the media, it was clear Fitzpatrick took this quite personally.
His emotional state may seem concerning and even weak to some, but Fitzpatrick has good reason to be disappointed. The Dolphins rebounded from a rocky start and set their record to 3-3 on the season. Fitzpatrick contributed his fair share, throwing 6 touchdowns in just the past two games.
Tagovailoa, the 5th pick in the 2020 draft, seemed inevitable that he would start in the year, but not after a string of good games from Fitzpatrick. After all, he made his NFL debut just last Sunday as the Dolphins routed the Jets 24-0.
Despite Fitzpatrick’s clear disappointment, the quarterbacks aren’t at odds. It’s actually quite the opposite within the team.
Tagovailoa viewed the change as a sort of bittersweet moment in his career. While earning his first start, he also benched one of his first mentors in the league.
“Although it hurts me in a way to see Fitz hurt, I’m just very, very lucky to have someone like Fitz in my corner, regardless of the situation we’re in right now.”
Fitzpatrick will remain a mentor to Tagovailoa for the season, and a 37-year-old, 15-year veteran, is certainly a great option for a young quarterback. Fitzpatrick’s emotional “breakdown” seems indicative of hard feelings, but he reciprocates Tagovailoa’s attitude towards the situation.
“I want him to do well and I think he’s a great kid and I think he has a really bright future. “
Tagovailoa will look to impress in a Week 8 match-up against the Los Angeles Rams.