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Jaylen Waddle: Tua Tagovailoa’s been consistent and a great leader

With the Monday deadline for teams to exercise fifth-year options on first-round 2019 draft picks, Mike Florio and Chris Simms weigh in on which players to keep a close eye on, including Daniel Jones.

Tua Tagovailoa is entering a critical third season with the Dolphins.

The quarterback has a new coaching staff and a new offensive playbook, led by head coach Mike McDaniel. He also has some key new weapons in receivers Tyreek Hill and Cedrick Wilson, as well as a new offensive tackle in Terron Armstead. So there will be a lot of data for the Dolphins to reach a conclusion on Tagovailoa before deciding on his fifth-year option next spring.

For now, the young quarterback has not necessarily changed his approach — at least according to college and pro teammate, Jaylen Waddle.

“Tua’s been Tua,” Waddle said in a Wednesday press conference. “He’s been the same old guy coming in, being consistent, being a leader. Just being a great leader, honestly.”

Waddle and Tagovailoa played together at Alabama. And then Tagovailoa was a significant part of Waddle reaching 104 catches, 1,015 yards, and six touchdowns in the receiver’s rookie season of 2021. If the pair can continue to build upon that established chemistry, then Tagovailoa should be able to answer any questions the Dolphins have about their quarterback heading into 2023.