100s of titles, one news app for just $10 a month.
Dive Deeper:
A Dolphins video of Tua Tagovailoa throwing a wobbly pass to Tyreek Hill completely backfired
The Miami Dolphins could be a disaster, folks.
Where did NFL.com rank the Dolphins’ draft class?
It makes sense.
Miami Dolphins’ Tua Tagovailoa-to-Tyreek Hill tweet did not go over as expected
The Dolphins' tweet showing a deep pass from Tua Tagovailoa to Tyreek Hill did not have the effect the team…
Dolphins announce signings of all 14 UDFAs and QB Skylar Thompson
Half of Miami's draft class is now under contract.
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Tyreek Hill responds with a Tua Tagovailoa video of his own
New Miami Dolphins wide receiver responded to some social media commentary with a Tua Tagovailoa video of his own.
Tyreek Hill tweets support for Tua Tagovailoa after Twitter goes wild over practice video
We're talking about practice?
Get all your news in one place
Latest Sport news:
Manchester City win Premier League as Gündogan seals incredible fightback
İlkay Gündogan scored the winner for Manchester City, who secured the Premier League title with 3-2 victory against Aston Villa
Read news from The Economist, FT, Bloomberg and more, with one subscription
Learn More
Man City pip Liverpool to Premier League title after extraordinary comeback to beat Aston Villa on final day
Manchester City have pipped Liverpool to the Premier League title after an extraordinary comeback to beat Aston Villa on a…
Mikel Arteta reveals Arsenal have made decisions over futures of Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah
Mikel Arteta has confirmed that decisions have been made over the futures of Mohamed Elneny, Eddie Nketiah and Alexandre Lacazette,…
Olivier Giroud leads AC Milan to first Serie A title in 11 years to deny rivals Inter
AC Milan won the Serie A title for the first time in 11 years after Olivier Giroud inspired the Rossoneri…
Newcastle Olympic put five past Maitland in much-needed win: NPLW NNSW round 9
Jemma House made her return.
From analysis to good news, read the world’s best news in one place
Thrower thrilled she didn't put the hammer down
Nicole Bradley almost gave up hammer throwing a year ago, after a rough patch in her athletics career. Now she's…
Sergio Perez calls for clear-the-air talks over F1 Spanish Grand Prix team orders denies shot at race win
Sergio Perez will hold clear-the-air talks with Red Bull over their team orders at the Spanish Grand Prix.

Dolphins see new and improved receiving corps lifting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa

By David Furones

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — If Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is going to take the big third-year step that has been seen from other passers in NFL circles, the greater support he has in the receiving corps will likely have a lot to do with it.

The Dolphins made the blockbuster deal for elite speedster Tyreek Hill. They already have Jaylen Waddle budding off his NFL rookie receptions record. They added Cedrick Wilson Jr., who can play bigger than most slot receivers. Additionally, Miami has Lynn Bowden, who missed all of 2021, coming back off a standout second half of the 2020 season, while returning Preston Williams and drafting rookie Erik Ezukanma, among deeper options.

In watching Tagovailoa throw to his wideouts in the team’s offseason workout program, Dolphins wide receivers coach Wes Welker has come away impressed with Tagovailoa’s progress.

“The progression that he’s made this offseason, I think it’s been the most of anybody out there on the field,” said Welker, who has a tad under 1,000 career regular-season and postseason receptions to his name as a player. “It’s been pretty crazy getting these guys — as far as our route depths and everything — and getting it synchronized with what the quarterback’s doing.

“We saw it in the first week, it being not where we wanted, and just how much better it’s gotten as we continued to work through it. The ball’s coming out on time, and receivers getting their depth. It’s been pretty cool to see how far it’s come Week 1 to where it is now.”

Beyond the mere speed the Dolphins have at receiver with Hill and Waddle, Welker enjoys watching how they consistently bring it in practice.

“Those guys are full speed all the time,” he said. “A lot of times you get guys that are 4.2 [seconds in the 40-yard dash] guys that know they’re 4.2 and don’t necessarily play 4.2. They play 4.2, and they do it a lot. Every time they’re out there on the field, they’re going as hard as they can.”

Of course, with that great speed in the receiving corps, Tagovailoa has to be able to lead Hill and Waddle with his passes — all while his arm strength has been in question through his first two NFL seasons. Although a Dolphins social media video that was intended to highlight Tagovailoa connecting with Hill on a deep throw this week went viral under criticism that he underthrew Hill, new Dolphins offensive coordinator Frank Smith doesn’t see any vertical challenges for the playbook from watching Tagovailoa throw.

“I wouldn’t say that we’re limiting ourselves with anything,” Smith said. “Every day presents different routes, different things we’re trying to accomplish with the receivers. I would say that everything we’ve done so far has been extremely optimistic. There’s certain things in our progressions and reads and his ability to move throughout his progressions has been awesome for a guy just, really, being in the system for a month.”

Following the national debate that derived from an over-analysis of one throw against no defense, Hill rushed to Tagovailoa’s defense on Thursday evening, tweeting out a video of a series of passes thrown perfectly in stride to a number of Miami receivers, including a deep ball to Hill.

Wilson will also be a valued playmaker in a unit that has since traded DeVante Parker to the division rival New England Patriots.

“His smoothness, his understanding of defenses and how to run routes, how to get open, understanding the techniques of defenders and how to attack them,” Welker noted as Wilson’s qualities. “Just a very savvy player who has kind of played with a chip on his shoulder. We’re looking forward for him to play with that same chip here.”

And Welker got a fellow Texas Tech Red Raider with the Dolphins’ second choice in the draft, fourth-round wide receiver Erik Ezukanma.

“Big, physical guy. Great hands,” Welker said of the 6-2 Ezukanma. “There were certain things in the film that you weren’t really sure about, but the kid is ultra-talented. I think he’s pretty raw right now, and we’ll see how he progresses in learning the offense and all those different things. We’re very high on him, and talking to the person, I’m fired up to be working with him and trying to take his game to the next level.”

With Parker no longer in Miami, Ezukanma’s ability to play physical and make contested catches could help replenish that void.

“From what we had in the room, it wasn’t solely going after something bigger or anything like that, it just kind of happened that way,” Welker said. “He is definitely a guy that we really liked, and he fell to a position that I think they were all comfortable with. He’s a very talented kid that has a lot of upside to him, and we’ll see how far we can take that upside.”

What is inkl?
The world’s most important news, from 100+ trusted global sources, in one place.
Morning Edition
Your daily
news overview

Morning Edition ensures you start your day well informed.

No paywalls, no clickbait, no ads
Enjoy beautiful reading

Content is only half the story. The world's best news experience is free from distraction: ad-free, clickbait-free, and beautifully designed.

Expert Curation
The news you need to know

Stories are ranked by proprietary algorithms based on importance and curated by real news journalists to ensure that you receive the most important stories as they break.

Dive Deeper:
A Dolphins video of Tua Tagovailoa throwing a wobbly pass to Tyreek Hill completely backfired
The Miami Dolphins could be a disaster, folks.
Where did NFL.com rank the Dolphins’ draft class?
It makes sense.
Miami Dolphins’ Tua Tagovailoa-to-Tyreek Hill tweet did not go over as expected
The Dolphins' tweet showing a deep pass from Tua Tagovailoa to Tyreek Hill did not have the effect the team…
Dolphins announce signings of all 14 UDFAs and QB Skylar Thompson
Half of Miami's draft class is now under contract.
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Tyreek Hill responds with a Tua Tagovailoa video of his own
New Miami Dolphins wide receiver responded to some social media commentary with a Tua Tagovailoa video of his own.
Tyreek Hill tweets support for Tua Tagovailoa after Twitter goes wild over practice video
We're talking about practice?
Get all your news in one place