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Dolphins Announce Tua Tagovailoa's Status For Thursday Night

Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa injured.

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 19: Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa #1 of the Miami Dolphins looks to make a pass play against the Buffalo Bills in the first half of the game at Hard Rock Stadium on September 19, 2021 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Tua Tagovailoa has less time than usual to prepare for Thursday night's matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals.

The Miami Dolphins quarterback left Sunday's game against the Buffalo Bills with what was initially reported as a head injury. However, he returned in the second half to lead a 21-19 victory over the Buffalo Bills.

Although Tagovailoa showed apparent concussion symptoms by wobbling after a hard hit from Matt Milano, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport said the third-year pro actually suffered a back injury. He's listed on the team's injury report with back and ankle issues.

Via Jonathan Jones of CBS Sports, the Dolphins officially listed Tua as questionable for Week 4's game.

The NFL is investigating whether Miami followed the league's concussion protocols, but they said "every indication" is that the team acted properly.

Even if Tagovailoa avoided a head injury last Sunday, he has less time to treat his ankle and back before facing the defending AFC champions on Thursday Night Football.

Per Rapoport, Tua said he nevertheless plans on playing. His back, which gave out on him after attempting a quarterback sneak, is a bigger concern than his ankle.

The 24-year-old has led the Dolphins to a 3-0 start with eight passing touchdowns and a 117.8 quarterback rating. If he's cleared to go, Tagovailoa will oppose the only quarterback drafted above him in 2020, Joe Burrow, in a marquee matchup on Amazon Prime Video.