MIAMI — Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa remains in concussion protocol and will not participate in next week’s Pro Bowl Games, a source told ESPN on Friday.
Tagovailoa had been named the first alternate Pro Bowler and was slated to replace either Joe Burrow or Patrick Mahomes, with both quarterbacks playing in Sunday’s AFC Championship Game and one bound for Super Bowl LVII. However, Tagovailoa went into protocol on Dec. 26 after suffering a concussion in Miami’s loss to the Green Bay Packers the previous day and missed the team’s final three games of the season, including a loss. by joker against the Buffalo Bills.
According to the source, Tagovailoa’s time in the protocol was deliberate as he met with several doctors and specialists. There were no setbacks as the Dolphins prioritize his long-term health.
The third-year quarterback set career highs in passing yards and touchdowns this season while leading the NFL in passer ratings. He was also the top scorer in the Pro Bowl fan vote.
Tagovailoa has missed most of six games after suffering concussions in Weeks 4 and 16. The NFL and NFLPA have launched two joint reviews into how his head injuries have been handled this season, including the premiere resulted in the firing of an unaffiliated neurological consultant who cleared Tagovailoa to play after hitting his head in Week 3 and tripping shortly after.
The NFL amended its concussion protocol as a result of this joint review.
Dolphins general manager Chris Grier said earlier this month that the team will enter the 2023 season with Tagovailoa as the starting quarterback and that the doctors they spoke to don’t believe the concussions in the quarterback will make him more susceptible to head injuries in the future.
The Dolphins have a May 1 deadline to exercise the fifth-year option on Tagovailoa’s rookie contract.