BSS QB Big Board: Alabama | Tua Tagovailoa

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The 2020 NFL Draft will take place next week and we’ll finally have some sports to talk about - sort of.  The Patriots will select 23rd overall in the first round and Bill Belichick will begin the task of building the next great Patriots team post-Tom Brady.  The Patriots could look to draft a quarterback in the draft, but is there a quarterback that is worth drafting in the first round? 

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I do not like the idea of trading up for Tua Tagovailoa.  While the idea of Tua can be enticing, I’d like to see the Patriots stay away from the Alabama star. 

The Tua-to-New England rumors are picking up steam, especially with the reports that the Lions are entertaining trading the No. 3 overall pick.  The Boston Globe’s Ben Volin painted a picture of a trade scenario that would send the Patriots No. 23 overall pick and other selections to Detroit for the opportunity to select Tua. 

Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman is out on that idea of trading up for Tua because it has been floated out in the media that the could be part of a trade package to Detroit.  Edelman, who was on FS1’s “First Things First” show, wasn’t thrilled with the comments of host Nick Wright. 

“If [Lions general manager] Bob Quinn and [coach] Matt Patricia gift Tua Tagovailoa to the New England Patriots and Bill Belichick for the 23rd pick, a third-round pick and Julian bleeping Edelman, I’m out,” Wright said.  “I don’t know if I’ll be able to watch this sport again because I can’t deal with the idea of it.”

Alabama Crimson Tide gear at Fanatics.comWright is a Patriots hater, so the idea of him and many others being miserable for another 20 years or so is tantalizing.  Tua is not the right play for the Patriots right now, but if he were to fall to No. 23, which he won’t, it will be an interesting decision on Belichick’s part. 

Now, full disclosure, prior to his devastating hip injury Tua was the potential first overall pick in the draft.  During his time in Alabama he threw 87 touchdown passes with a 93.4 QBR, and he’s a former National champion.  Tua was the real deal in college and the Nick Saban quarterback was groomed for this moment. 

Having been able to play under Saban at Alabama helps Tua despite the injury.  Belichick and Saban have a great relationship and he could easily slide into the Patriots system.  There have been comparisons to Patritck Mahomes and Lamar Jackson because of him being a dual-threat quarterback in college. 

Tua’s injury will cost him the opportunity to play for the Bengals; maybe that is a blessing in disguise at the end of the day.  From a Patriots perspective Tua could sit behind the combo of Stidham/Hoyer for this season, get completely healthy and develop into one of the best QBs in the league under the guidance of Belichick and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.

The Alabama product doesn’t have to come to New England and be mobile like he was in college.  Brady was not the mobile quarterback during his time with the Patriots. 

The problem is teams are worried about the long-term prognosis for Tua.  With the COVID-19 crisis still dominating the world, teams are not able to work out players, let alone have them do a physical with a team doctor.  Tua has the talent to be a top-10 quarterback in the NFL, but the unknown surrounding his hip will likely cost him. 

The Patriots should not give up draft capital on Tua.  It doesn’t make sense to invest so heavily into Tua when there are so many other pressing needs on the roster to be addressed.  The team has Hoyer and Stidham currently on the depth chart at quarterback and the team feels comfortable with those two players going into next season. 

There is a talent gap on this roster and the Patriots, who are currently cash strapped, do not have the ability to sign veteran free agents to round out their roster.  They’ll need to address those needs through the draft and the picks they have.  The Patriots need to select the best player available at No.23 or if they trade up for another player.  The Patriots need to rebuild and can do it around Stidham.  They’ll need to add to the offensive line, they need a tight end and depth at receiver. 

I am a "no" on trading up for Tua, due to the injury risk associated with him.  If he is sitting at No. 23, well that's a whole new conversation that is worth the debate. 

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Boston Sports Syndicate: BSS QB Big Board: Alabama | Tua Tagovailoa
BSS QB Big Board: Alabama | Tua Tagovailoa
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