Prior to suffering a serious hip injury with the Crimson Tide last season, Tua was seen as the consensus No. 1 overall player in the draft.
LSU’s Joe Burrow has since taken over that title with open questions about when Tagovailoa will come off the board. Recent reports suggest that he could be facing a huge fall come Round 1 on Thursday evening.
According to this note from ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, that might not be the case. Fowler spoke to multiple executives around the league who still believe Tua will be a top-10 pick.
Two NFL execs who did extensive work on Tua on why they still think he'll go top 10:— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) April 21, 2020
*Ability to lead. Alabama teammates "love that dude," one said.
*Fast-paced game: "Shades of Russell Wilson" in his ability to make plays quickly, suited for modern game.
It really is a crap shoot at this point. Some teams have reportedly removed Tagovailoa from their draft boards altogether. Meanwhile, one team in the AFC could be looking to trade into the top 10 for the former Heisman finalist.
This is certainly one of the stories that will shape how the early part of the draft looks. Could Tua still find himself drafted ahead of Oregon’s Justin Herbert? If not, how far might he drop?
If these two executives are correct, it won’t be as dramatic of a fall as we might think right now.