Flores: Tua passed physical, won't start Dolphins camp on PUP

Tua Tagovailoa essentially declared himself ready to roll a week ago. A doctor's examination has confirmed that declaration.

Dolphins coach Brian Flores told reporters Wednesday Tagovailoa passed his physical and will be a full participant, avoiding starting camp on the physically unable to perform list.

"He's through his physical. When there's practice you'll see him out there," Flores said, via the Miami Herald's Adam Beasley. ... "He's not on PUP. There's an acclimation period for the next two weeks. There's strength and conditioning and walkthroughs."

Tagovailoa doesn't have to arrive to camp and prepare to hit the field for hours of football work just yet, thanks to this season's adjusted camp schedule due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

It is an ideal situation for Tagovailoa, who is returning from a significant hip injury that ended his final season at Alabama and called into question his NFL future. After a rigorous rehabilitation program, the Dolphins spent the fifth-overall pick on Tagovailoa in April, ending discussion about his draft stock and how his hip injury might have affected it.

The focus now shifts to how quickly Tagovailoa can acclimate to the pro game, and how prepared he'll be to take the field in Week 1. Though Flores hasn't and likely won't declare Tagovailoa the starter before mid-August, the expectation is for the Crimson Tide star to take over as the face of the franchise's future. He'll first need to get comfortable at game speed or near-game speed among his fellow Dolphins, as the cancellation of the preseason wiped out his best chance to get in-game reps before Week 1.

That, Flores said, is really most important for the quarterback.

"People want to talk about Tua," Flores said, per the Sun Sentinel's Safid Deen. "I understand it. He's a young player and needs to take it one day at a time, and not think about the season."

Veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick -- last season's leading rusher for the Dolphins -- returns for 2020, a season in which he can serve as a seasoned voice of reason or a beacon of light for the green Tagovailoa. Flores gave the obligatory "you always want competition" response when asked if there would be one, but also emphasized no one on this roster, which finished 5-11 last season, has room for complacency.

"Some players are further along than others," Flores said, again via the Herald's Beasley. ... "But there are no jobs that are going to be handed out."

The Tua Era begins with this camp. Week 1 can't arrive soon enough.

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