Tua injury must be taken more seriously

Beau Benoit

Rooting for an athlete to overcome an injury can be a heartwarming moment for everyone. But pushing an athlete to their physical limits can be life-threatening, if not life-ending. The NFL and the Miami Dolphins should be ashamed of possibly prematurely ending the career of a phenomenal quarterback by avoiding concussion protocols. 

In his Week 3 game versus the Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa suffered a late hit in which he fell backward and hit his head on the turf. Clearly shaken and dazed, he stumbled toward the line of scrimmage, briefly collapsed to the ground and was removed from the game.  

During Tagovailoa’s examination, what should have been ruled a head injury was only deemed a back and ankle injury. With this designation, the young QB was cleared to play during the second half of the game. Tagovailoa thankfully finished the game with no noticeable signs of a concussion. 

The next game came sooner than preferred as the Dolphins had to travel on Thursday to play the Cincinnati Bengals. With the short week, protocols for player health had to be rushed, if enacted at all. In the case of the Miami Dolphins, this meant the gross negligence of their prized QB. Ruled as questionable to play on Wednesday, Tagovailoa ultimately started on Thursday’s game. 

Disaster occurred after only 10 minutes when Tagovailoa was sacked, forcefully brought to the ground and once again hit his head on the turf. Unlike last time, this collision resulted in hand spasms, unconsciousness and body stiffening. A scary sight indeed, fans and players alike could only watch as the young QB was wheeled off on a stretcher to be examined by medical professionals. 

This begs the question: should Tagovailoa have played in both the second half of the Bills game and the start of the Bengals game? Absolutely not. Regardless of the injury during Thursday night’s game, Tagovailoa shouldn’t have been on the field for the remainder of the game versus Buffalo, and he should have never stepped foot onto the field during Thursday’s game.  

In a sport as contact heavy as football, injuries are bound to happen. It is the responsibility of agencies from the team to the league to respond and do the best they can in preventing injuries. The blatant disregard of Tagovailoa’s obvious head trauma versus the Bills and his playing and subsequent further injury against the Bengals demands punishment and revision of protocols.