When it comes to heading into his sophomore year, it's easy to see the excitement in the eyes of Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. Given how much focus the team has placed on the offensive side of the ball, there will be plenty of opportunities to show off the work he's done this offseason.
In 13 games last season, Tua Tagovailoa threw for 2,653 yards, 16 touchdowns and 10 interceptions while completing 67.8 percent of his passes. Under new coach Mike McDaniel, the quarterback now has Tyreek Hill and Cedric Wilson Jr. to throw at along with Jaylen Waddle. The offense's transformation hasn't gone unnoticed by defense during the OTAs, and if everything clicks right, the Dolphins could return to the postseason for the first time since the 2016 season.
Muscle and Fitness spoke to Tagovailoa about the excitement surrounding the team during OTAs and what made up the Muscle Milk athlete's offseason checklist.
The short low season for Tua Tagovailoa
We were in the building much earlier than expected just because of the new head coach Mike McDaniel. We've been in the building since April 4th I believe and we haven't left. It was a really short off-season because by the time April 4th came around we were all in the building and it's probably the most guys I've seen on OTAs. I think the guys just want to feel the trainer, the system and their trainers individually. Boys are excited and want to come into the building. They hear good things about our trainers and want to see for themselves. I think that's a testament to Mike McDaniel and the guys on his coaching staff.
I'm very excited. Everyone in the building is excited. The first few OTA drills we had against defense were real eye openers for us as a team. You can see how good we can be as a team, but football is one of the most humbling sports. You can never get too comfortable or too high because it will always find a way to humble you. We're all very excited here, but we just have to keep pushing it day by day.
Tua Tagovailoa's offseason goals
One of the biggest things for me was rebuilding my foundation from my feet to my core and then down to my arm strength. A lot of what I did was designed to help me strengthen my arm and become more flexible. Since we had to learn another system -- this is the third system -- it was really about dialing into that offensive system, getting really good at word choice, getting good at knowing where the guys need to line up, and just being able to help the guys make that sense. Transitioning to minicamp can be a lot easier when the guys are here for OTAs.
I've seen some improvement in being able to push the ball down the field again. I honestly think it's just practice. I wasn't really able to push the ball down the field last year because we didn't have plays specifically for pushing the ball down the field. Many plays called up last year were for one person. Either that person is open, or the piece could be dead. It's a bit different now. My sophomore year was different than my rookie year and this year will be different than last year in how we approach things. I definitely feel a lot more confident when I can push the ball down the field. It will be exciting.
The off-season schedule
Mondays are heavy leg days and then we work in the fields. We do footwork and we throw. Tuesdays are more for the long ball and it's a day for the upper body. We do our fieldwork early in the morning at 7am. We do footwork and end up throwing long balls. It's not just about falling backwards and throwing low. It throws the long ball out of rhythm, rolls to my right and throws deep. Wednesday is more of an active recovery day. Thursdays are heavy leg days and Friday is upper body days again. Saturday is another active recovery day and Sundays are free.
I was very fortunate to have been with Muscle Milk for about three years. t many people have that opportunity to say that they have protein available post-workout. It's played a big part in my post-workout program, what I do in terms of recovery, and Muscle Milk has helped with that. You do ice baths and whatever after your workout, but for me I always have my shake afterwards. I know they don't have the mocha flavor anymore, but they just came out with the peanut butter flavor and I'm looking forward to trying this one.
Tua Tagovailoa: The Hail Mary HIIT Workout
Instructions: Set a timer for 45 minutes, then complete the following circuit for as many rounds as possible.
- Abdominal wheel rollout: 10 repetitions
- burpees: 12 repetitions
- jumps: 15 repetitions
- treadmill run: 60 seconds
- Rest 60 seconds
- DB Bench Press: 10 repetitions
- push up: 12 repetitions
- DB line: 15 repetitions (each side)
- wall seat: 60 seconds
- Biceps curl: 10 repetitions
- Triceps Lengthening: 12 repetitions
- dips: 15 repetitions
- plank: 60 seconds
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