Dolphins Rumors: Latest on Tua Tagovailoa Contract Talks After Odell Beckham Jr. Deal

May 6, 2024

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - JANUARY 13: Tua Tagovailoa #1 of the Miami Dolphins warms up prior to an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the Kansas City Chiefs at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium on January 13, 2024 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Kara Durrette/Getty Images)

Tua Tagovailoa is entering the final season of his rookie contract, but a contract extension between the star quarterback and Miami Dolphins feels very likely after the team handled other business this offseason, including signing Odell Beckham Jr. to a one-year deal in free agency.

As ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported during Sunday’s SportsCenter (1:50 mark), “negotiations have begun in earnest” between the sides:

“The Dolphins have at least got the ball rolling. Typically what happens is, team makes a contract offer, player counters and then they go from there and see if they can find a sweet spot. The next three months will be crucial. My sense is this is not something that has graduated to imminent, but the Dolphins are pretty committed to this. Their actions this offseason say that they are going to pay him. They scaled back a lot of the big-money contracts, cutting players like Xavien Howard, so they want to do this. They wanted Tua to prove that he could have a fully healthy season and produce and he did that.”

The Dolphins underwent plenty of turnover this offseason.

The team cut Howard, linebacker Jerome Baker and defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah. Defensive tackles Christian Wilkins and Raekwon Davis, guard Robert Hunt, linebacker Andrew Van Ginkel and safeties Brandon Jones and DeShon Elliott were lost to free agency.

There were additions as well Alongside Beckham, the team signed safeties Jordan Poyer and Siran Neal; linebackers Jorydn Brooks, Shaq Barrett and Anthony Walker; cornerback Kendall Fuller; center Aaron Brewer; tight ends Jonnu Smith and Jordy Fortson; and defensive tackles Neville Gallimore, Benito Jones, Jonathan Harris, Daviyon Nixon and Isaiah Mack.

The Dolphins also re-signed a number of players, including wideout Braxton Berrios, and added players in key positions at the draft like edge-rushers Chop Robinson and Mohamed Kamara and offensive tackle Patrick Paul, among others.

So these Dolphins will have a different look in 2024, but the core group—led by Tagovailoa, Tyreek Hill, Jaylen Waddle, Raheem Mostert, De’Von Achane, Jalen Ramsey and Jaelan Phillips—remains intact.

Tagovailoa, 26, came into the 2023 season with major question marks after concussions limited him to 13 games the season prior and seemed serious enough to potentially threaten his career.

But he stayed healthy for a full 17 games in 2023, throwing for career highs in yards (4,624), touchdowns (29) and completion percentage (69.3 percent), though he also added career highs in interceptions (14) and sacks taken (29). Given that 22 quarterbacks were sacked more times than Tagovailoa last year, however, that particular career high wasn’t nearly as concerning as his interceptions.

The other issue is that the Dolphins went one-and-done in the postseason for the second straight year, this time being soundly beaten by the Kansas City Chiefs in one of the most frigid games in NFL history. The Dolphins have excited during the Mike McDaniel and Tagovailoa era, but it hasn’t translated to playoff success.

With an extension likely on the horizon, however, the duo should have ample opportunity to reverse that trend.