Then coach Brian Flores took a rag-tag group of players he was handed and whipped them up enough to earn five wins. The victories placed the Dolphins No. 5 in the draft. It's possible that Miami could lose out on their QB of choice. Or he could fall right in their lap.
Of course, if Tagovailoa's medicals check out, there could be an auction at the top of the draft with several QB-needy teams sitting right behind Miami, including the Los Angeles Chargers.
"We'd like to find the right guy to be the quarterback," Grier said, via Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald. "You see how important it is around the league. So, I wouldn't just say it's (owner) Steve (Ross). It's Brian (Flores). Myself. Coaching staff. Scouts. We think it's important that we find the right guy, and the leader, to be the quarterback here for a long time."
With Tua's hip injury bringing question marks to the process, it's possible the signal-caller needs time on the bench before taking over full time.
The Dolphins GM noted that we're far from knowing how Tagovailoa's medicals will check out before the draft kicks off in Las Vegas in April.
"I'd say we're still so early in this process," Grier said. "We haven't met him, we haven't sat down with him, talked with him. Our doctors haven't seen him. We know as much as you do right now. We see the media reports and things of that nature. At the end of the day, we've got to get the know the guy, get in front of him, just like any player. We're very, very early in the stage in the fact that we haven't even met the guy yet."
Tua's medical checkups this offseason will be big stepping stones that could shape the top of the 2020 draft. If everything looks good on the dynamic lefty QB, a bidding war could ensue. If Grier is willing to ship a boatload of assets he's collected in the past year, the Dolphins certainly have enough currency to make a play for their franchise signal-caller, if needed.