The Miami Dolphins will open the Tua Tagovailoa era this weekend when the rookie takes his first snap as the team’s starting quarterback. Tagovailoa, selected with the fifth-overall pick back in April, heads into the game with the entire Dolphins fan base anticipating greatness. It is important, however, to remember, one game does not make a career.
A ton of things could go right for Tagovailoa on Sunday. He could have a monster game, showing he fully understands the offense and recognizes where he needs to throw the ball. He could have perfect chemistry with DeVante Parker, Preston Williams, Mike Gesicki, and the rest of the receiving options. He could play like Dan Marino, who was 19-for-29 for 322 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions, giving him a 108.7 passer rating, in his first career start. He could light the world on fire.
Or, he could play like a rookie. He could miss easy throws due to nerves. He could lock on to receivers. He could try to force throws into windows that cannot be used in the NFL. More interceptions than touchdowns is a possibility. He could look like a quarterback who is not yet on the same page as Parker, Williams, and Gesicki. He could struggle.
Maybe he will simply be an average quarterback in his first start. The key is, first start. The Dolphins expect Tagovailoa to be their starting quarterback for the next 10 years, not just for this one game in the middle of this season. However this one game is exciting and something fans want to see. We just have to remember, one start does not make a career.