The injury occurred in the second quarter. Tagovailoa dropped to pass, but was soon sacked by defensive lineman Josh Tupou. In the process of the sack, Tagovailoa was thrown to the ground and looked to initially not be moving. The Dolphins then announced on Twitter that Tagovailoa was taken to a local Cincinnati hospital, and that he is conscious and has movement in all his extremities.
The injury occurred just four days after Tagovailoa suffered another scary injury in Week 3 against the Bills before returning to play. While the team initially ruled it as a head injury, the talk after the game was that the QB actually hurt his back.
The Dolphins have a lot of questions to answer about Tagovailoa’s scary injury. We’re keeping track of the latest updates on Tua here.
Tua Tagovailoa ruled out for Week 5 against the Jets
Head coach Mike McDaniel announced on Monday that there was “no timetable” for Tagovailoa’s return to the field, and that he would be out for Miami’s Week 5 game against the New York Jets:
Mike McDaniel: Tua Tagovailoa still has no timeline. "He'll be out for this game against the Jets."— Hal Habib (@gunnerhal) October 3, 2022
McDaniel noted that the quarterback remains in the concussion protocol.
NFLPA fires unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant who cleared Tua
The NFL Players Association has terminated the unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant involved in Tua Tagovailoa's concussion check last Sunday, as @ProFootballTalk said.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) October 1, 2022
Both the UNC and the #Dolphins team physician were interviewed Friday, per source. Investigation ongoing.
The NFLPA’s decision to terminate the unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant involving in clearing Tua Tagovailoa came after the union’s discovery of “several mistakes” made by the doctor in its view, per source.— Jonathan Jones (@jjones9) October 1, 2022
Head coach Mike McDaniel: ‘I get the optics’
Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel addressed the media on Friday, and discussed how his quarterback was cleared to play on Thursday night:
Mike McDaniel on why team felt comfortable playing Tua: "There was no medical indication from all resources. If there would have been anything lingering with his head, I wouldn't have been able to live with myself if I prematurely put someone out there in harm's way."— Jeff Darlington (@JeffDarlington) September 30, 2022
Mike McDaniel: “I get the optics. I understand people’s concern. The one thing I can exude with 100% conviction is every person in this building had correct process and diligence.— Cameron Wolfe (@CameronWolfe) September 30, 2022
McDaniel said he could not live with himself if he put Tua on field prematurely due to head injury.
NFLPA President J.C. Tretter addresses the protocols
NFLPA President J.C. Tretter addressed the current concussion protocols, as well as the “no-go” symptoms, in a statement released on social media:
Tretter references the investigation into Tagovailoa’s injury on Sunday, requested by the NFLPA in the aftermath of the game against the Bills. That investigation is ongoing.
NFL’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Sills discussed the protocols
According to Dr. Allen Sills, who is the NFL’s Chief Medical Officer, Tagovailoa was checked every day following Sunday’s injuries. In an appearance on the NFL Network Friday, Dr. Sills indicated that Tagovailoa was checked for concussion symptoms “every day” since Sunday, and still had to be cleared by an independent neurologist:
Speaking with @judybattista on @nflnetwork, NFL Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Sills says Tua Tagovailoa was checked for concussion symptoms every day since Sunday. Points out independent neuro expert had to clear him. Once review is done, full results will be released publicly.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) September 30, 2022
Tua Tagovailoa traveled back with the team in a neck brace
I’m told #Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa “traveled back with team in a neck brace. All (initial) scans were negative, nothing broken. Will have MRI when he gets back,” per a league source. I’m sure Tagovailoa was comforted by having family at the game & at the hospital.— JosinaAnderson (@JosinaAnderson) September 30, 2022
Tua Tagovailoa sat with head coach Mike McDaniel on the flight
McDaniel said he and Tua sat together on the plane and watched MacGruber during the flight home, and that Tua laughed throughout the movie— Marcel Louis-Jacques (@Marcel_LJ) September 30, 2022
Tua Tagovailoa was taken to the hospital. He had movement in all his extremities.
Tua Tagovailoa has been taken to a local hospital for further evaluation. He is conscious and has movement in all his extremities.— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) September 30, 2022
After the game, it was reported that Tua would be discharged from the hospital and travel home with the team:
This comes after Tagovailoa was taken off the field in their victory over the Buffalo Bills last Sunday with what the Dolphins called a back injury. Tagovailoa would come back into the game in the second half, despite what was initially thought of as a head injury. Tagovailoa was listed as questionable throughout the week with back and ankle injuries.
The NFL said concussion protocols were followed
The NFLPA requested an investigation into how Tagovailoa’s concussion protocol was handled last Sunday against the Bills. According to Mark Maske of the Washington Post, the investigation is not complete:
NFL's Jeff Miller says the league has "every indication" that the concussion protocols were followed properly Sunday with Tua Tagovailoa but the formal review requested by the NFLPA, which takes 1-2 weeks, is not completed yet.— MarkMaske (@MarkMaske) September 28, 2022
Backup QB Teddy Bridgewater entered the game for the Dolphins, and the Amazon Prime broadcast crew said Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel spoke to Tua during halftime.
The Bengals won the game, 27-15.