UPDATE: Tua Tagovailoa Slimming Down to Boost Speed and Playmaking


In the high-stakes world of the NFL, where every detail can tip the scale toward victory or defeat, Miami Dolphins’ quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has been the subject of much discussion and analysis, especially concerning his physical conditioning. After a challenging season marked by concussion issues in 2022, Tagovailoa and his team decided to bulk up in the hope of enhancing his durability on the gridiron.

However, this decision seems to have had unintended consequences on his performance during the 2023 NFL season, particularly impacting his mobility and ability to rush, elements that were previously significant aspects of his gameplay. Now, with a full regular season behind him and stats that have sparked conversations, Tagovailoa is looking to recalibrate, focusing on regaining speed and agility in hopes of returning to his playmaking roots that dazzled fans during his college career.

Tua Tagovailoa approached last offseason with a clear goal: beef up to withstand the physical toll of professional football, particularly after his concussion issues in 2022 had the Dolphins and their fans holding their breath more than once. This strategy, while rooted in enhancing his resilience on the field, saw Tagovailoa adding significant weight in an effort to armor up against the onslaught of the NFL’s behemoths. The rationale seemed sound—more mass could potentially translate to better protection.

However, the added weight seemed to clip Tagovailoa’s wings somewhat, particularly impacting his rushing ability—a key facet of his game that had previously made him a dual-threat quarterback. Throughout the 2023 NFL season, this impact was evident in his mobility, which appeared to be hampered by his increased mass. The stats don’t lie; despite playing a full regular season, Tagovailoa only managed to rush for 74 yards, a mere four yards more than his total in 2022, starkly illustrating how his increased size may have curtailed his natural agility and speed.


In light of these developments, Tagovailoa’s personal trainer, Nick Hicks, has shared insights into the quarterback’s offseason training focus, which marks a departure from last year’s strategy. This time, the emphasis is on shedding the extra weight and honing in on improving Tagovailoa’s speed and agility. The goal is crystal clear: to enable Tua to weave through defenses with the same swiftness and dexterity that made him a standout player in college, balancing durability with dynamic play.


Tagovailoa, for his part, seems keen on not just returning to form but evolving into a more formidable playmaker on the field. He aims to reintegrate a significant degree of mobility into his game, aspiring to recapture the magic of his college days when his ability to evade tackles and extend plays with his legs was as much a part of his arsenal as his arm. This pivot in focus toward becoming a more mobile, agile quarterback who can make plays in multiple ways could not only redefine his career trajectory but also potentially elevate the Dolphins’ offense to new heights.

In essence, Tagovailoa’s journey through the 2023 season and his subsequent offseason adjustments offer a fascinating glimpse into the continuous evolution of a professional athlete. Balancing physical resilience with athletic agility is a delicate dance, one that Tagovailoa is navigating with the determination to emerge as a more versatile and dynamic quarterback. In doing so, he’s not just chasing personal improvement; he’s aiming to redefine what success looks like for him and the Miami Dolphins in the seasons to come.


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