Entering the NFL season, there was some hype surrounding the Miami Dolphins. However, there were also people that had some questions. A lot of those questions involved whether or not the Dolphins had a quarterback good enough to be a serious contender in the AFC. Through two weeks, those questions have been quieted.
Tua is among the MVP favorites
On Sunday, the Miami Dolphins were down 28-7 at halftime to the Baltimore Ravens. By the end of the third quarter, it was 35-14. Then the fourth quarter happened and Tua Tagovailoa happened.
Tagovailoa threw for 199 yards and four touchdowns in the fourth quarter as Miami came all the way back to defeat the Ravens by a score of 42-38. Overall, Tua had 469 yards and six touchdowns in the game. Through two weeks, Tagovailoa has 739 yards while completing 71.1% of his passes. He's thrown seven touchdowns and two interceptions. Miami is 2-0 on the season.
Sunday's outing was one of the best performances by a quarterback in recent memory. As a result, Tagovailoa's odds to win NFL MVP have shot up exponentially.
Way back in the summer, Tua opened as an extreme 150-to-1 long shot to win the award. Before opening day, his odds were down to 50-to-1. After Miami's Week 1 win where Tagovailoa was solid, his odds dropped slightly to 40-to-1. However, the big move came after Tua's Week 2 masterpiece.
Currently at BetMGM, Tagovailoa is 16-to-1 to win NFL MVP. Those odds are tied for fifth best in the league behind only Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes, Justin Herbert and Lamar Jackson. His odds are tied with reigning back-to-back winner Aaron Rodgers as well as Jalen Hurts. Tagovailoa has better odds than household names like Tom Brady, Russell Wilson, Joe Burrow, Matt Stafford and Kyler Murray.
Is it sustainable?
Tagovailoa is certainly not going to throw for six touchdowns and almost 500 yards every week, but it wouldn't be overly surprising if he took a massive step forward this season.
Tagovailoa now has an offensive coach in Mike McDaniel, who is the current betting favorite to win NFL Coach of the Year. He's got elite weapons around him in Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle. The offensive line was improved over the offseason as well.
Tagovailoa has developed a bit of an unfair reputation through his first two seasons. It was obvious that Brian Flores, his previous head coach, didn't trust him as far as he could throw him. Flores was also defensive minded and didn't want to open up the offense to maximize Tua's talents. It's hard to be a young quarterback in that kind of environment. McDaniel seems like he's going to do everything to maximize Tagovailoa.
Tagovailoa would not be the first quarterback to take a massive step forward in his third year. We know the talent is there as we saw what he did at Alabama. He was drafted ahead of Justin Herbert and almost nobody disagreed with that choice at the time of the draft.
If he can stay healthy and the Dolphins can compete with the Bills atop the AFC East, Tua might just work his way into the MVP conversation. It's a long shot, but a lot less of a long shot than it was just two weeks ago.