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Texans Coach Lovie Smith: QB Tua Tagovailoa Has Dolphins 'Running On All Cylinders'

Ready to move on following a frustrating Week 11 loss, Houston Texans coach Lovie Smith shares thoughts on Dolphins third-year quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.

HOUSTON — The Houston Texans' experiment with Davis Mills as their starting quarterback is not going so well, but the Miami Dolphins are thriving with Tua Tagovailoa. 

The Dolphins are on the verge of their first AFC East title since 2008 with a 7-3 record, and the progression Tagovailoa has made in year three is leading the charge. 

"What I know about him just from being in the college game and all that, he’s an accurate thrower, more athletic than people probably want to give him credit for," coach Lovie Smith said. "It seemed like forever that he went through that injury because right now, he’s running an offense that’s running on all cylinders."

Despite the concussion that forced him to miss a pair of games, Tagovailoa is having the best season of his career. He has thrown for 2,265 yards while completing 71.0 percent of his passes, 18 touchdowns and three interceptions.

The Dolphins are benefiting from Tagovailoa's play after not giving up on the Alabama product a year after trade rumors dominated his sophomore campaign.

Although Tagovailoa is having a career season, Smith understands that the Dolphins' offense will provide the 1-8-1 Texans with more prominent challenges outside the quarterback position Sunday afternoon at Hard Rock Stadium.

"They have a few special players," Smith said. "What I saw from watching the video right away was their commitment to the run too. I assumed I would see more 11-personnel groupings, but that’s not the case. It was a little more 21- and run-personnel groupings."

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The Dolphins have put together one of the league's best offenses by averaging 391.5 yards and 25.2 points per game. 

Tagovailoa has established great chemistry with wide receiver Tyreek Hill. In his first season in Miami, Hill has made 81 receptions for a team-best 1,148 yards and four touchdowns.  

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