2020 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa

Brian Lamb
Brian Lamb is the owner of NFL Draft Lounge and has covered the NFL Draft since 2011. Brian is also the owner of the Infinity Sports Network, which NFL Draft Lounge belongs to.

Tua Tagovailoa

Height: 6’1

Weight: 218 lbs


2019 Davey O’Brien Award Preseason Watchlist
2018 Maxwell Award
2018 Walter Camp Award


Tua Tagovailoa first broke onto the scene as he replaced Jalen Hurts in the 2018 College Football National Championship.  From there, he’s never looked back as the he remained the starter.  The 2018 season was a breakout performance for him as he racked up the Maxwell Award and Walter Camp award.  Five-star recruiting prospect according to 247Sports.  In this article, we’ll breakdown his career at University of Alabama and evaluate his future as an NFL quarterback.



What I Like:

Pocket Poise and Quick Reads

This play is the epitome of what makes Tua Tagovailoa so dangerous.  As Tagovailoa drops back in the pocket, he drifts right to stay within the pocket, all the while keeping his eyes downfield to make reads across the field.  He’s abe to hit a receiver on a crossing route, which nearly ends up as a touchdown on the stats sheet.



What I Dislike:

Breakdown Of Mechanics Inside The Pocket

Tua Tagovailoa is planning on throwing to his outside receiver the entire play, but unfortunately doesn’t pull the trigger quick enough, double-clutches the ball, and then when he does throw to his intended receiver, Tagovailoa doesn’t have his feet set properly and overthrows the ball.  Tua isn’t necessarily facing a lot of pressure from inside the pocket, so he has the time to make the throw with proper mechanics. This isn’t a one-time incident either.  There are inconsistencies when it comes to throwing mechanics.



Where I’ve Seen Improvement:

Throwing Accurate Passes With Anticipation

I’ve seen throws like this from Tua Tagovailoa for three years now, and it just seems like he’s getting more and more accurate with them.  On this play, he places the ball where only his receiver can make a play on the ball, More importantly, the ball isn’t behind the receiver.  Rather, Tagovailoa hits the receiver in stride, which results in an impressive touchdown pass.



Overall Breakdown

Has adequate height and weight for the quarterback position.  Displays solid athleticism, which allows him climb the pocket and escape pressure.  Has a good ability to handle poor snaps.  Shows to have a good ability to set his feet quickly and make accurate throws to his receivers.  Displays a good ability to throw with anticipation and hit receivers in stride on slants.  Displays a good ability to fit passes into tight windows between coverage.  Has a good ability to throw accurate passes on intermediate routes.  Shows to have a solid ability to lead his receiver and put the ball where only the receiver can make a play on intermediate routes.  Has solid arm strength that allows him to make throws across the field and on a wide variety of routes.  Displays solid athleticism to run bootlegs and play action efficiently.  Has a solid ability to sense when the pocket is collapsing and has a solid ability to drift in pocket to stay with protection and make reads downfield.  Shows to have a good ability to make quick reads in read option and RPOs.  Has a very good ability to make quick reads and scan the entire field.  Displays a good ability to checkdown passes to tight ends or running backs when receivers downfield are covered.  Has solid accuracy and mechanics on throws outside of the pocket when on the run.  Displays a solid ability to throw accurate screen passes in the flats.  Shows to have a good ability to throw accurate passes outside the numbers and along the sidelines in tight coverage.

Has marginal accuracy on throws downfield as balls tend sail over receiver or are under thrown.  Displays adequate movement inside the pocket when pressured from up the middle.  Shows to have an adequate ability to remain poised when pressured from the edge.  Displays inconsistencies inside the pocket in regards to throwing mechanics when pocket begins to collapse.  Has an adequate ability to throw the ball away when flushed out of the pocket.


2020 NFL Draft Projection

First Round

Let me first start off by saying that I am concerned with the list of injuries that Tua Tagovailoa has suffered while at Alabama.  The hip injury is clearly the most concerning of all, even if he is expected to make full recovery.  As we’ve seen in the past, injuries do take a toulon a player’s longevity.  With all of that being said, I do still have Tua Tagovailoa going in the first half of the 2020 NFL Draft. I have him listed as the second best quarterback in this draft class, behind LSU’s Joe Burrow.

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