Mike McDaniel confirms Tua Tagovailoa has been in and out of offseason program

Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel confirmed on Tuesday the report from late last week that quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has not participated in all aspects of the team's offseason program.

"The good news about ‘all’ is it’s very black and white. He has been here for offseason activities, he has not been here for offseason activities — he has been both," McDaniel said in his press conference. "I think what's important in the player-coach relationship is communication. And I think however things play out, as long as we're communicating and we're on our Ps and Qs in what we need to get accomplished, then we have a fighting chance.

"It's been a good exercise in our relationship this offseason."

Tagovailoa is entering the last year of his rookie contract with Miami after the club exercised his fifth-year option last spring. The Dolphins and Tagovailoa's representation have been negotiating a new deal for the 26-year-old quarterback. But McDaniel said he has not gotten involved in that process.

"Yeah, I don’t want any of that burden in my life,” McDaniel said. “This is what's great about the orchestration of our organization, I think it's important that the player-coach relationship is put on a pedestal where you don't tinker with that. My job is to get him better. His job is to communicate with me how I’m doing in that process. And I think we’re in a safe zone where when he's talking to me about my expertise, [we avoid] stuff that is not my expertise. So we try to stay true to that and that’s paid off dividends this offseason.”

Tagovailoa started every game of a season for the first time in 2023. He led the league with 4,624 passing yards while also throwing for career-highs in touchdowns (29) and interceptions (14).