Tua Tagovailoa, Ryan Fitzpatrick have very cordial Dolphins battle

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The Dolphins quarterbacks aren’t going to let the Miami heat get to them.

Newcomer Tua Tagovailoa, the No. 5 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, has his work cut out for him, trying to work his way into playing time behind veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick and former top-10 pick Josh Rosen.

So far, however, everything has been nice and cordial.

“To start it off with ‘Fitz’ – (he is a) very, very down-to-earth person,” Tagovailoa said on a Zoom call with reporters Friday, while sporting Fitzpatrick’s No. 14 jersey.

“Very humble. I got to meet his family about two days ago and it was pretty funny because everyone while we were on FaceTime, everyone’s just scattered around the house. So he introduces me to his kids and then he introduces me to his wife and he’s like, ‘This is it. This is everyone and this is my family,’ and then (laughter), lo and behold he forgets two of them. It’s like, this man really has a family. He’s really been in the league for so long.

“To be behind a professional like that, to me it’s kind of mind-boggling how down-to-earth he is. It’s one of those things where it’s, this guy gets it.”

For his part, the well-traveled Fitzpatrick is taking his mentor role seriously, knowing he’s simply a stopgap until the 22-year-old takes over under center. The only Dolphins player over the age of 30, Fitzpatrick in on his eighth NFL team and entering his 16th pro season. In November, he will be 38.

“I don’t know how much time it will be before Tua will be in the lineup,” he said on Aug. 1. “I know that I am the placeholder. We’ve already had that conversation. I’ve told him, ‘I’m going to do the best I can to lead this team and win football games when I’m out there.’ Whenever it is that Tua gets his chance whether it’s early or late or whenever, I’m going to be his biggest cheerleader.”

There are plenty of other big names in Tagovailoa’s corner this early in his career, and he’s putting in the work to win over franchise icon Dan Marino as well.

“The first day I got into the building, Dan was in our meeting and I got to talk to Dan,” Tagovailoa said. “He’s also a really down-to-earth guy – someone that you can just chat with. For someone who pretty much is the talk of the town with Dan, he’s super humble. He doesn’t hold his head high or walk around here like he’s the man – which he is, but he’s super humble.”

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