Tua Tagovailoa announced during a news conference on Monday that he will skip his senior season at Alabama and enter the 2020 NFL draft.
Needless to say, the Heisman Trophy runner-up will be on the radar of more than a few teams come April, but the hip injury that cut his season short will factor into the decision-making of NFL executives, some of which Tagovailoa has had conversations with in the past week, according to ESPN’s Alex Scarborough.
“It’s a unique situation,” Tagovailoa said. “With my hip, a lot of the guys and general managers and owners that I’ve gotten to talk to have said the same thing. They kind of look at this injury as a knee injury almost, even though it’s not, in a way that, ‘Are we going to take a chance on this guy or would he be able to possibly do a pro day before the draft?’ The biggest thing they want to see is that we can move and be back to how we were playing prior to the injury.”
But as NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport revealed, a recent update on Tagovailoa’s hip was one of the reasons he felt comfortable declaring for the draft.
It will be interesting to see where Tagovailoa goes in the draft. Before the start of the college football season, many believed Tagovailoa was the clear-cut choice for the No. 1 pick, but the emergence of LSU’s Joe Burrow and Ohio State’s Chase Young, along with Tagovailoa’s injury, has changed that. Still, it’s very possible that the Alabama product hears his name called on Day 1 assuming everything goes well with his recovery.