Flores: Exam doesn’t tell him much about Tua’s chances in 2020

With so much of the NFL offseason conducted through virtual workouts because of the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the bigger question marks around the league remains the health of Miami first-round pick Tua Tagovailoa.

The Dolphins took the quarterback out of Alabama with the fifth overall pick in April, despite the fact he had surgery to repair a dislocated hip in November and has not done much beyond individual drills since.

Before the NFL shut down all team facilities in March, the Dolphins’ doctors examined Tagovailoa and the team apparently was satisfied enough to make him the second quarterback taken in the draft, behind LSU’s Joe Burrow, who went No. 1 overall to Cincinnati.

But Dolphins coach Brian Flores remains steadfast in needing to see the 22-year-old on the field before he gets too optimistic about his quarterback’s prospects of contributing in the 2020 season.

“Yes, he was examined, but again, ‘examined’ and then doing a two-hour practice and playing in a game — there’s a process to all those things,” Flores told The Palm Beach Post on Tuesday afternoon. “So, as far as whether or not he can or can’t do something, it would be hard to say.”

With veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick expected to open the season as the Dolphins’ starting quarterback, Flores isn’t in a hurry to rush Tagovailoa out there.

“My hopes don’t get high or low until I see a guy in a huddle,” Flores said. “Until I see a guy make it through practice — multiple practices — it’s hard to say we’re going to do this, that or the other thing at game speed. That’s for anyone.”

The Dolphins are scheduled to open the season Sept. 13 in New England. Their first home game is scheduled for the following Sunday against Buffalo.

Miami is scheduled to host Burrow and the Bengals on Dec. 6.