Dolphins’ Tagovailoa, Waddle, Expected to Play Thursday Night Against Bengals


The undefeated Miami Dolphins (3-0) project to keep swimming upstream heading toward the defending AFC champions Cinncinatti Bengals (1-2) at 8:15 ET Thursday in Paycor Stadium.

Everything in today’s NFL starts at quarterback, including the Dolphins’ success and injury concerns. Promising starter Tua Tagovailoa leads the league in QBR — an ESPN creation expanding quarterback rating to account for mobility. Additionally, he trails only Bills centerpiece Josh Allen in passing yards. 

Joys turned to concerns when the third-year quarterback exited last week’s win against the Bills after a late hit from linebacker Matt Milano that drew a penalty for roughing the passer. 

#Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa — listed as questionable with back and ankle issues — is expected to play tonight against the #Bengals, barring a setback, per sources. WR Jaylen Waddle (groin) and LT Terron Armstead (toe) should be good to go, too.

– NFL Network Insider Tom Pelissero

Tagovailoa staggered when trying to get up from the blow and was evaluated for a concussion on the sideline and in the locker room. 

Fortunately, the damage wasn’t bad enough to keep Tagovailoa out of action. He finished the game, avoided the concussion protocol, and will play Thursday night after being listed as questionable with back and ankle injuries.

Jaylen Waddle provides a steady target for the hobbled quarterback to aim for. The Dolphins’ top passing option opposite of spectacular speedster Tyreek Hill nurses a groin injury that gave him questionable status as well. He’s expected to play. 

Waddle’s performance even at less than 100 percent increases the Dolphins’ chances of maintaining perfection. He will leapfrog star receiver Stefon Diggs for the receiving yards lead barring an early injury setback. Waddle proves to be a weekly endzone threat as well, being one of 10 players with at least three touchdown catches.

Left tackle Terron Armstead secures the dynamic Tagovailoa/Waddle connection. He is expected to play through a toe injury that forced him to miss practices leading to Thursday’s game. 

Armstead hasn’t surrendered a sack this year. Pro Football Focus rewarded his strong efforts by rating him the fourth-best tackle at pass protection after two weeks.

On the other side of the ball, Pro Bowl cornerback Xavien Howard (groin/glute) is expected to play. He draws a potentially game-deciding matchup against rising superstar Ja’Marr Chase.

NFL betting

NFL Network first reported that Armstead and Waddle were expected to play vs. the Bengals.

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