The last time Joe Burrow and Tua Tagovailoa took the field against each other, Burrow’s LSU team outlasted Tua’s Alabama team, 46-41. The soon-to-be Heisman trophy winner threw for 393 yards that day; Tua threw for 418. Between them, they had 7 touchdown passes.
A few months later, they were the first 2 quarterbacks selected in the 2020 NFL Draft; Burrow went #1 overall; Tagovailoa heard his name called 4 picks later.
Their first NFL matchup was supposed to take place during their rookie season with the Miami Dolphins hosting the Cincinnati Bengals on December 6th, 2020.
It would have been the 3rd matchup between the two quarterbacks after having played twice while in college (Tua won their 2018 face-off, 29-zip).
Unfortunately, Joe Burrow’s rookie campaign ended on November 22nd.
Tagovailoa threw for 296 yards against the Bengals that year in a 19-7 Miami win, continuing the Dolphins’ dominance in the series (18-7 all-time, including playoffs).
Fast forward to 2022.
Two weeks ago, Tua threw for 469 yards and had a half dozen touchdown passes against the favored Ravens on the road.
Last week, he led his team to a 2-point win over the favored Bills at home.
Tagovailoa is currently #2 in the league in passing yards and quarterback rating. He’s #1 in QBR and #4 in completion percentage.
More importantly, at 3-0, Tua’s Dolphins are the AFC’s last unbeaten team.
Despite all of that, it is Joe Burrow and the 1-2 Bengals (-200) who are favored over Tagovailoa and the Dolphins (+170) tonight.
DraftKings Sportsbook has it as a 4-point spread with the Over/Under at 47.
Personally, I’m hoping for a good old fashioned shootout like the last time these 2 quarterbacks faced off.
Something in the neighborhood of 42-38 would be great fun.
Here are the Field Gulls staff’s picks which will populate with more predictions as the week progresses: