Dolphins Sunday Mailbag: Tua Topics, Wilson, Fangio, and More

How will Tua's weight loss impact him? What's the plan on the offensive line? Tackling those and other Miami Dolphins issues
Tua Tagovailoa
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Part 1 of a Memorial Day weekend Miami Dolphins mailbag:

From Big Ern McDolphin (@dana_buice):

The last three offseasons you have stated you have felt the Jets were going two have a really good season & unfortunately they have not. Your attitude on the Dolphins seems to be I need to see it first but the Jets always seem to get your optimism. Why are you always so optimistic for the Jets?

Hey Dana, first off, I don’t recall seeing this about the Jets the past three offseasons, but I’ll play along. And the reason I’ve said they could be really good or a problem is because their defense is always top notch, except the offense has been so bad it’s not gotten a chance. My stance on them remains the same, that they could be very good in 2024 IF Aaron Rodgers gets back to 2021 form, the same as the Dolphins could be very good IF they show they can rise up to the challenge against playoff opponents. I will add there that I think the Dolphins’ floor is higher than the Jets’ floor, and each team’s ceiling is similar, but, yes, each team has to show it.

From Mark Jones (@chiefkfc):

What are your thoughts on Tua's new weight loss and training regimen? Seems like he's trying to get back to a couple years ago when had escapability...Love your podcast

Hey Mark, first off, thanks for the mention of the podcast. As for Tua’s weight loss, I see it as a very positive development because I really don’t think it was one of the big factors in his ability to stay healthy last season (giving up earlier on plays to me was at the top) and it did hurt his mobility. Now, he needs to remain smart in terms of not trying to be a hero when the play breaks down, but the added mobility absolutely should help.

From Orlando Aloisi (@OrlandoAloisi):

Dolphins are about to get some cap help; what’s out there for interior O-line help?

Hey Orlando, the names that jump out are Greg Van Roten, who had a really good season with the Raiders last year, and Dalton Risner, who played with Minnesota after some years with Denver. But, truth be told, I don’t think it’s a slam dunk in the least the Dolphins will do anything in that regard.

From Dave (@angryvet59):

Coach McDaniel has an affinity for Niners that he coached, but Jeff Wilson has fallen out of favor. The few times he played, to me anyway, he played pretty well. Any idea why & do you think he's a trade candidate? Love the Podcast & as a fellow older gentleman you & Perk are great!

Hey Dave, thanks for the love. I agree with you that Wilson has done nothing to see his role diminish the way it has other than deal with his share of injuries that slowed him down or made him unavailable. I could see the Dolphins trading him, though I would caution against expecting a ton in return. He’s a solid player, but running backs generally aren’t difficult to find.

From Ricky Schemeboat (@GilNYC17):

Hi Alain, is this the deepest LB unit they’ve had in a while? Seems like it on paper. I’m thinking it’s a strength in 2024.

Hey Ricky, I’m with you there. I really like the moves the Dolphins made there in the offseason by bringing in Jordyn Brooks and Anthony Walker Jr. It more than made up for the loss of Jerome Baker. And now the Dolphins go four-deep with David Long Jr. and Duke Riley as the other two, and if Channing Tindall breaks through, even better. Even if he doesn’t, this absolutely is the team’s deepest linebacker group in recent memory.

From Jesse (@JesseBlattstein):

Are they happy with the O-Line roster? Any interest in bringing back Connor Williams or adding anyone else…?

Hey Jesse, based on everything Chris Grier and Mike McDaniel have said, I think they again feel a lot more comfortable about the offensive line than fans and the media do. So don’t be shocked if they stand pat. As for Williams, the biggest question right now is whether he’ll ever be able to resume his NFL career.

From Ed Helinski (@MrEd315):

In your estimation, how is this Tua situation going to play out with the Dolphins? What vibes are you getting?

Hey Ed, I’m a strong believer in the smoke/fire theory, and there’s just been too much smoke about Tua getting a contract extension that it feels like almost a foregone conclusion it’s going to happen. The question now is how the extension will look and how much guaranteed money is involved, which is what is holding up the process.

From Rico’s RoughNecks (@TheFin22):

With the recent Holland comments regarding Fangio, what’s the narrative if Dolphins defense regresses? They finished 10th last season with Ramsey missing 7 games, X -4, JP -9, Holland -5, & more. Will Weaver & Co. become the new “villains” if MIA D regresses to a bottom half D?

Hey Rico, it’s an excellent point you make because that Dolphins defense was really, really good at one point last year before the injuries hit, no matter how anybody feels about Vic Fangio. I don’t necessarily believe that Anthony Weaver will become the fall guy if the defense struggles at all in 2024, but maybe Fangio would get a lot more respect in that scenario.

From Robby Redford (@RobbyRedfo52925):

What did you think you would gain by admitting that you are not a Dolphins fan? Of course you want them to win, it’s better for business like you said. Well you just lost a subscriber my friend. If you don’t love the Dolphins I’m not (messin’) wit ya!

Hey Robby, I wasn't looking to "gain" anything other than make perfectly clear where I stand as a professional journalist who has covered this team for more than 30 years and knows the history of this team probably better than any other media member in the market, as opposed to a fan doing this with no real shot of being objective no matter how hard he/she tries. So what you get from me is completely objective analysis, not views that come from aqua-and-orange-colored glasses. If that doesn't work for you and you need somebody to tell you all the time that everything is awesome, I understand.

From Michael Misconi (@MichelMisconi):

Do you think McDaniel will improve his on-field coaching this year? Specifically, sticking with the run game longer, countering when teams take away Hill and Waddle, clock management, and challenges?

Hey Michael, there’s no reason to think he won’t. Mike McDaniel is a very sharp who’s self-aware. Having said that, I’d still say it won’t be easy to get away from old habits or things that have worked well.

From Larry Chapman (@LarryCh57302147):

Will Miami make 1 more signing/trade after the 1st? If so, who would be your best guess?

Hey Larry, I’d say it’s probably 50-50 they make a move, and if they did, I think Greg Van Roten or Calais Campbell would be the guys I’d be watching.

From Eugenio Tallone (@Ertallone):

Hi Alain, what would you do with Tua if you were Chris Grier this offseason?

Hey Eugenio, I have been very consistent with this, both on the website and the All Dolphins Podcast, that I would have Tua play on the fifth-year option and reassess next offseason. My reason is that while Tua has been good, at times very good and even excellent, the performances against playoff opponents haven’t been up to par (and, yes, his stats there pale in comparison to those who got extensions) and that won’t work in an AFC loaded with young stud quarterbacks. As I wrote this week, also remember that the Baltimore Ravens had Lamar Jackson play on his fifth-year option, and Jackson had an MVP title on his resume at the time, so it’s not like this would be unprecedented.

Alain Poupart


Alain Poupart is the publisher/editor of and co-host of the All Dolphins Podcast. Alain has covered the Miami Dolphins on a full-time basis since 1989 for various publications and media outlets, including Dolphin Digest, The Associated Press, the Dolphins team website, and the Fan Nation Network (part of Sports Illustrated). In addition to being a credentialed member of the Miami Dolphins press corps, Alain has covered three Super Bowls (for, Football News and the Montreal Gazette), the annual NFL draft, the Senior Bowl, and the NFL Scouting Combine. During his almost 40 years in journalism, which began at the now-defunct Miami News, Alain has covered practically every sport at one time or another, from tennis to golf, baseball, basketball and everything in between. The career also included time as a copy editor, including work on several books such as "Still Perfect," an inside look at the Miami Dolphins' 1972 perfect season. A native of Montreal, Canada, whose first language is French, Alain grew up a huge hockey fan but soon developed a love for all sports, including NFL football. He has lived in South Florida since the 1980s.