The Miami Dolphins are reaping the rewards of adding Tyreek Hill to their roster, as he’s taking his teammates, including Tua Tagovailoa, to a new level.
There’s just something players seem to get from winning at the highest level that simply can’t be replicated in their football DNA any other way. When the Miami Dolphins traded for Tyreek Hill this offseason, they expected his experience in a winning locker room would rub off on the team around him.
In that regard, so far, so good.
It’s not often you can put Tua Tagovailoa and Patrick Mahomes’ names in the same sentence. After all, one has been to multiple Super Bowls, won an MVP, and the other has yet to appear in a Pro Bowl. Plenty of questions remain around Tua Tagovailoa after his first two years in the league, and year three is sure to confirm or deny the skeptics’ position on the young QB.
Hill is already raising the bar on what the expectations are in Miami, and his intensity from preseason game days to training camp practices seems to have Tagovailoa in a groove he hasn’t been in yet.
Reports out of Miami Dolphins camp indicate Tyreek Hill is making Tua Tagovailoa better
After playing five years with Patrick Mahomes, Tyreek Hill knows what it’s like to catch passes from a winning, all-pro quarterback. That’s rubbing off on Tua.
Cameron Wolfe appeared on NFL Network on Tuesday to talk about what he’s seen from the Dolphins, and specifically, Tyreek Hill this year. It’s raising the expectation and rubbing off on Tagovailoa. Here’s what Wolfe had to say:
"“I’m seeing Tua throw to his spots with anticipation in a way that I haven’t seen in his first two years. And then like I mentioned, Tyreek Hill’s work ethic rubs off on everybody else.”"
Make no mistake, this relationship has been brewing for weeks.
Hill has impacted far more than just the offense, as the daily reps against a six-time Pro Bowl receiver is also making defensive backs better, according to Wolfe.
"“He’s been taking guys under his wings. He’s been busting cornerbacks butts every day in practice and he adds a new dynamic to that offense.”"
But what really sounds like Mahomes? Here we go:
“Getting Tua on the move and using those playmakers like Tyreek Hill and Jalen Waddle to put the pressure on defenses to make decisions on who they’re going to cover,” is what Wolfe sees the Dolphins doing more of. That sounds a lot like what we’ve seen from Mahomes in Kansas City the last few seasons, who has been boldly unafraid of leaving the pocket to make plays and create some urgency in a pinch.
Mahomes’ ability to work off balance and with incredibly tricky arm angles likely can’t be replicated one-for-one by anyone in the league, but Tua doesn’t have to be Mahomes. He just needs to take advantage of his weapons and push himself a little bit more.
Sounds like Hill is helping him get there.