Tua Tagovailoa: DeVonta Smith won’t have to change much to succeed in NFL

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Wide receivers are expected to be on the Dolphins’ offseason shopping list and quarterback Tua Tagovailoa can give scouting reports on a couple of the options.

Tagovailoa played with DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle at Alabama and Smith said last month that he’s talked about a reunion with the quarterback at the professional level. Some have questioned if Smith’s size will make for a challenging transition to the NFL, but Tagovailoa told CBS Sports that the 2020 Heisman Trophy winner shouldn’t have much trouble.

“I think his transition to the next level will be kinda . . . slim to none,” Tagovailoa said. “In a way where it won’t be much changing. I think the competition will be different for him obviously, but he will be more than fine. I know a lot of people say he’s too small or too skinny, but his film speaks for itself. He goes out and takes care of his business, does what he needs to do. They don’t call him the ‘Slim Reaper’ for no reason.”

The Dolphins are likely to have the chance to take Smith with the third overall pick if they stay put come April, but free agency and other draft prospects could get in the way of a Crimson Tide reunion.

23 responses to “Tua Tagovailoa: DeVonta Smith won’t have to change much to succeed in NFL

  1. Tua is a class act. I wish everybody would give this guy a chance to show what he can do. Build the team around him with the draft picks. Please do not mortgage the future. As for Smith, I think he might still be available at the 18th pick. I think he will fall due to concerns about his size (165 lbs.?), and rightfully so. The kid can definitely ball though.

  2. Tua hasnt shown he can succeed yet so him being a homer saying a former teammate wont have to change anything to succeed means less than nothing.

  3. Trade down to the 4th or 5th pick, add a couple more day two picks from a qb hungry team, draft one of the two stud receivers. Easy.

  4. Just look back 5 years or so at the smaller guys in the league. They all are gone besides TY. NFL is a whole different beast than playing for Bama with an elite line. Once you get that first concussion it is downhill from there.

  5. I have nothing against Tua personally but I have said many times I do not think he has what it takes to be an NFL starter other than his draft position. And I think that was a mistake. I do think Smith should do well (easier transition for one) but Tua needs to get his own game in order before he starts prognosticating.

  6. “With the 3rd pick in the draft, the Miami Dolphins select DeVonta Smith.”

    No teams will move up to take a QB at 3. Falcons take Fields at 4.

  7. Lots of skinny receivers have had long NFL careers, and lots of big strong WR’s have been injury prone. Sure, when I watch this kid he looks like a pro bowl NFL WR that could use 15-20 pounds of muscle. But Tua is right. He’s not going to need to change much, but the physical punishment will be somewhat more severe. However, he is coming along at the right time where DB’s aren’t allowed to hit you very hard coming across the middle. This kid has no fear. I have seen skinny receivers go to the ground quickly to avoid hits, but this kid is a tough guy, so he will absorb some hits. I haven’t been able to figure out who’s injury prone and who isn’t. If someone could figure that out, they’d be worth a mint to an NFL team.

  8. If you can’t move back you take Peni Sewell. The game starts in the trenches. He will give you time to throw to any receiver or open holes for the running game. No receiver is worth picking in the top 3. Take the best receiver available at 18.Tua is going to be fine next year mentally and physically.

  9. ghjjf says:
    February 26, 2021 at 11:08 am
    So far Tua has been a failure in the NFL so he’s probably not the best person to be giving advice.
    ________

    I wouldn’t say Tua is a failure up to this point, but still, there are a lot of question marks about him being a franchise QB so far. We all know the QB position is more complicated than the receiver position, yet I agree with you, that even if Tua played with Smith, Tua should concentrate on his own self, because the fact remains he himself has had trouble adapting to the NFL so far.

  10. He is another over rated to small guy who will be a gadget player and slot guy after a team wastes a high pick on him. Probably end up on 4 or 5 different teams because every OC and coach will think they can find a way of using him and his talent.

  11. I will go ballistic if Miami takes a WR @ 3. There will be teams looking to move up for a QB or maybe even for Sewell. And I think Waddle is the perfect fit for Miami right now. That WR room needs an overhaul with only Williams and Parker staying. Waddle is the perfect safety valve for Tua and he’s insanely fast. And he’s an incredible returner. And he had better stats that Smith in the games they both played last year. Many think he’s the best WR in the draft, anyways. But for Miami, he definitely is…

  12. Just by the name “Slim Reaper” teams should draft him. On a serious note though.. Russell Wilson & Drew Brees were too short, Tom Brady wasn’t athletic enough. Jerry Rice was too slow ect. I’ve noticed what makes a great college player great in the NFL is hard work and dedication. Devonta Smith has both qualities. He will have a nice NFL career and punish those who doubt him.

  13. People do realize that Miami’s second leading wide receiver is 5’6″, 160 lbs, right?

    (Obviously, Grant held his position because of his ST skills and speed and would not be worth a #3 pick, but Smith has the same frame as Diggs and can get to 180-190 lbs.)

  14. And conversely, Parker and Preston are two of the best high-pointers in the league but are constantly fighting injuries. Their physical stats respectively: 6’3″, 209 lbs and 6’5″, 219 lbs.

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