Former Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa spent some time reflecting on his journey to the NFL late Sunday following the Miami Dolphins.

It was an emotional day all around, including from Ryan Fitzpatrick, who waved the crowd to cheer louder for Tagovailoa when he made his NFL debut as Fitzpatrick’s replacement with 2:27 left in the win over the New York Jets. The Dolphins’ possible next franchise quarterback ran onto the field to a big roar from the crowd of 10,772.

The moments on the field after the game were pure reflection for Tagovailoa, and he explained it to reporters. Tagovailoa spent several minutes sitting alone on the empty field and on his phone with his parents.

“It was a very special moment for me because my parents weren’t here,” Tagovailoa said. “I sat close to where I think our last drive ended, and I FaceTimed my parents. It was exciting to get out there. It was really fun. My parents were happy to see me out there playing again.”

The Dolphins are hoping Tagovailoa’s ability is able to overcome his injury history.

The Dolphins made the former Alabama quarterback the No. 5 overall pick in the spring NFL Draft, and hope he can help lead their rebuilding effort that began a year ago. Miami did not let his long injury history, which most notably included a dislocated and fractured hip that ended his 2019 season in mid-November, get in the way of a draft pick.

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