Tua Tagovailoa says he will be holding his own pro day on April 9, and has impressed Cincinnati Bengals’ head coach Zac Taylor.
On the first day of the NFL Scouting Combine, Alabama quarterback Tagovailoa’s first official job interview was a lengthy one.
The 337 prospects spending four days in Indianapolis are openly evaluated by scouts, coaches, personnel men and medical professionals. The doctors were the first to have a look at Tagovailoa.
He arrived at the University of Indiana medical facility for his medical evaluation at 10am and only returned to the players’ hotel at 7.49pm, just 11 minutes before his first scheduled informal team interview.
“It’s been a process now,” Tagovailoa said in a forgiving tone. “I was the last [prospect] to leave [the hospital].”
“Mentally it’s been a grind, but it’s not something that’s new to me,” he added.
“I’ve dealt with a hand injury, my left ankle, my right ankle. So I sort of knew what to expect going through this process, but it’s definitely been a grind.”
Tagovailoa said he and agent Leigh Steinberg are meeting with team doctors to learn about any information that might be gleaned from those tests, but no surprises are expected.
After meeting with the media at the Indiana Convention Center on Tuesday morning, Tagovailoa is moving ahead to formal team interviews over the next two days.
He is planning to be back on the field in a few weeks and based on his most recent surgeon visit, Tagovailoa is operating as if he will be cleared on March 9.
“I’ll be holding my own pro day April 9,” he said, adding that the on-field activity is more of a comfort zone. “You guys are making me talk about myself, making me feel uncomfortable.”
The April 9 workout is later than Alabama’s official pro day on March 24, but is expected to fall on the same week players with lingering injury evaluations are summoned back to Indianapolis for the combine re-check.
The Cincinnati Bengals have a quarterback vacancy with Andy Dalton not returning and have closely studied Tua, the person and prospect, head coach Zac Taylor said Tuesday.
“Met Tua last night. Really impressive individual,” Taylor said.
“State champion in high school, won a college championship of course. The guy has been a champion at every level.
“You want to go through the background on every player. See these guys get a chance to work this spring. He’s going to get a chance to work out. He’s a guy we’ve been excited to see work.”
LSU quarterback Joe Burrow and Ohio State defensive end Chase Young are projected to be the first two players selected.
Tagovailoa said he spends zero time on social media and has not dedicated attention to where he might be drafted.
“Whether it’s first, 32nd or 200, I’ll be grateful,” Tagovailoa said.
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