MIAMI – Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel isn’t ignorant of the criticism surrounding how the quarterback is Toa Tagoviloa He was dealt with after a head injury apparently against the bills on September 25; He knows what people’s opinions are.
But he says he does not waste his thoughts on them.
Speaking to local media on Wednesday, McDaniel said any doubts about whether he or the Dolphins neglected to allow Tagovailoa to play against the Cincinnati Bengals, four days after suffering a head injury against the Bills, would be “collapsed” if he was coming from the people he serves. Anything outside the Dolphin Building, he said, is also out of his control.
“It’s all retrograde anyway,” he said. So if people want it [give their opinion], whatever. …if I take the time to think about it, say Monday night for five seconds – that’s five seconds where I don’t think about all the other things about the team and the upcoming game.
“I have a lot of great respect for the game, for every participant, and for everyone who counts on it, I mean, I’m actually against [Terrell Owens]. You know, “Speak well of me, speak badly of me, just talk about me” – I would be great if no one talked about anything. That’s how I’ve been doing my whole career. But [I’m] I totally expect them to have all kinds of opinions because that’s the nature of a monster, and that’s what happens when you watch it and you’ve admired it your whole life. You see it happen over and over again, and nothing in that way would really surprise me.”
Tagoviloa was assessed to have a head injury during the first half of Miami’s win over the Bills in Week 5, after he hit his head on the ground and stumbled on his way back to the rally. He ditched the concussion protocol and got back into the match, with he and the team stating that a back injury he sustained earlier in the match caused him to trip.
He went on to pass a concussion assessment for the week leading up to Thursday’s game and was allowed to play in it, but he suffered a concussion shortly before halftime that required a brief hospitalization. Tagovailoa was discharged and allowed to return to Miami with the team early Friday morning.
The NFLPA exercised its right to initiate a review of the NFL’s concussion protocol after Tagovailoa’s swift return to the field and terminated an unaffiliated trauma consultant who conducted his initial evaluation after determining he had made “several errors” in his evaluation, sources told ESPN.
Multiple sources told ESPN that a review of Tagovailoa’s dealings could be completed as soon as Thursday.
The reaction to and handling of Tagoviloa’s injury has prompted countless responses on social media and even from fellow NFL coaches. Speaking the day after Tagovailoa suffered a concussion against the Bengals, Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbo said he was “surprised” by what he had seen the night before.
“I’ve been coaching for 40 years in college and the NFL,” Harbaugh said. “I’ve never seen anything like this before.” “I really appreciate our doctors, I appreciate our owner, I appreciate our general manager from the point of view that there are two things you have to keep in mind: One, a lot of time players want to play. Sometimes you just have to tell doesn’t have to be the answer.
“Sometimes guys may be there physically where they sound, but they’re not yet confident, they haven’t arrived yet — and we’ve been through that this year. We’ve been through those two situations this year. Don’t put them there until they’re ready.”
New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick told WEEI radio he had “definitely” ruled out players who appeared unable to play, despite being cleared by medical staff.
The Dolphins beat the Patriots and Ravens in their first two games of the 2022 season.
McDaniel insisted that Tagovailoa had been cleared by an independent neurologist and that he had interacted with him in person all week—and he had seen no signs of a head injury.
“I’m in constant contact with this guy day in and day out,” McDaniel said. “We’re talking about high-profile football talks about progression, defenses and recalling things from a couple of weeks ago and then having to repeat the 15-word play call. All things, no signs whatsoever. There was no medical indication, from all resources, That there is nothing to do with the head.
“Beyond the eyeball test, which I know you really wouldn’t feel very comfortable if I just depended on it — I mean, that’s why we do our tests,” McDaniel added. “He didn’t have a head injury. So guys were hitting their heads all the time, that’s why I was adamant [that] His head injury was evaluated and he was not injured. And when he told you he was in a full mental party, he talked us through it, and then he played the whole game and then he had a press conference and then he worked in the media all week.”
The Tagovailoa Dolphins have been disqualified from their Week 5 match against the New York Jets, by designation Teddy Bridgewater starter so that Tagoviloa can return. McDaniel has said repeatedly that there is no timeline for Tagovailoa because it is still in the concussion protocol.
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