MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Tua Tagovailoa and Jalen Hurts will play familiar roles when the 5-1 Miami Dolphins visit the 5-1 Philadelphia Eagles Sunday night:
Battling each other.
They may for a time have been teammates at Alabama (in one of the greatest quarterback rooms in college football history), but then, now, and always, they’ve been competitors.
Since 2017, the public comparison and quiet rivalry has been there, dating all the way back to Tagovailoa’s earliest days at Alabama in 2017.
“I was his lifting partner when I got there to Alabama, and oh my goodness, let me tell you, he could probably squat with our linemen or maybe just a little more,” Tagovailoa said this week.
“This guy can squat. He’s strong. So it doesn’t surprise me with the quarterback sneaks, and that’s not to diss any of our linemen. That’s just to say I’ve seen this dude put up a lot of weight, and he has lifted with some of our linemen at Alabama, so he’s strong.”
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Tua Tagovailoa, Jalen Hurts Take Center Stage
Fast-forward six years, and those gym buddies are now two of the biggest stars in professional football.
Those stars will be on display Sunday night, when Tagovailoa and Hurts meet for the first time as pros. So it’s only fitting that we use this opportunity to compare Tagovailoa and Hurts — we’ve been doing it for six years.
MORE: Miami Dolphins vs. Philadelphia Eagles Predictions — 7 Crucial Stats and Players To Watch
Their career numbers reveal what we’ve long assumed — Tagovailoa is easily the better passer, but Hurts is the more complete and durable player.
- Record as a starter: 26-14
- Passing TDs: 66
- INTs: 28
- Yards per attempt: 7.8
- Rating: 97.9
- EPA per play: .145
- CPOE: 1.9
- Rushing TDs: 6
- Rushing yards: 328
- Games missed to injury (including playoffs): 10
- Record as a starter: 28-12
- Passing TDs: 51
- INTs: 26
- Yards per attempt: 7.5
- Rating: 90.9
- EPA per play: .134
- CPOE: .9
- Rushing TDs: 31
- Rushing yards: 2,151
- Games missed to injury (including playoffs): 3
What They’re Saying About Tagovailoa, Hurts
Tagovailoa on Hurts: “There’s different ways to skin the cat, right? Many different ways. He went down a different road than I did to get to where I’m at. And he had to go down a different road to get to where he’s at. But like I said, I got a lot of respect for him – who he is as a person, who he is as a player, and wish him the best of luck as we play him.”
Hurts on Tagovailoa: “It’s been great to see the things he’s been able to do over his career. I’m hoping for continued success.”
Dolphins DC Vic Fangio on Hurts: “He has no weaknesses. So that’s a strength. I’ve always liked him. I told [Executive Vice President of the Philadelphia Eagles Howie Roseman] back in ’21 he had his quarterback. Very strong. Obviously, his running ability is tops. Gives them an extra guy in the run game, makes it hard to defend. Excellent scrambler. Great leader. It’s hard to find fault with him.”
Eagles DC Sean Desai on Tagovailoa: “Man, he’s playing really efficiently. He’s getting the ball out really quickly. He’s really decisive with his decision. He’s not taking many hits. And he’s getting the ball to his playmakers, whether it’s the run or pass game.”
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