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Report: Dolphins’ Next Coach Will Build Around QB Tua Tagovailoa

After the Dolphins unexpectedly fired coach Brian Flores on Monday, Miami’s plan is to land a new head coach who believes in quarterback Tua Tagovailoa being the team’s signal caller.

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that Tagovailoa is expected to be the starting quarterback for the Dolphins in the 2022 season. It signals a big move for Miami as the Dolphins were one of the potential landing spots linked to trading for Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson. 

However, much of the Watson’s interest was centered around Flores. His firing came after reports surfaced of disagreements with Dolphins general manager Chris Grier over personnel decisions that include drafting Tagovailoa. Per Rapoport, the team will look to find a coach who can build around the former No. 5 overall pick out of Alabama.

Tagovailoa finished the 2021 season with 2,653 passing yards, 16 touchdowns and 10 interceptions while recording a 90.1 passer rating. He is 13–8 as a starter in two seasons for the Dolphins.

Miami started this season 1–7 before winning eight of its last nine games, becoming the first team in NFL history to lose seven consecutive games and win seven consecutive games in the same season. 

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Per Rapoport, the Dolphins have interviewed seven candidates, including Rams assistant Thomas Brown, Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll—who coached Tagovailoa at Alabama—Bills defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, Cardinals defensive coordinator Vance Joseph, 49ers offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel, Cowboys offensive coordinator Kellen Moore and defensive coordinator Dan Quinn.

Dolphins owner Stephen Ross told reporters in a press conference this week that the franchise has no desire to pursue Watson and that Tagovailoa is the team’s current quarterback.

“I have a lot of confidence in Tua, and I think the next head coach will work with him. ...  "I've watched him grow. He's a fine young man. He is right now the quarterback and will be depended upon by the new head coach.”

Miami (9–8) finished the 2021 season with a 33–24 victory against New England and earned its second consecutive winning season.

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