The speculation around Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s health since entering concussion protocols has stayed high. His ethnicity is speculated to have something to do with an injury he suffered on Sept. 29. The dichotomy of the NFL system with its owners and players, subjected to combines and preferential treatment, and racial disparities is always a hot topic and MSNBC host Tiffany Cross folded Tua into the polarizing subject matter.
“To see all these Black men crashing into each other with a bunch of White owners, White coaches, and the complete disregard for Black bodies and Black life,” said Cross. “I mean, it just represents a larger issue.”
Quickly, radio host Megyn Kelly quipped at Cross’s assertion that Tagovailoa was Black and made it known that she is not feeling how Tiffany crossed the line.
“He’s not Black. Hello? You dumba**, Tiffany Cross,” the former Fox personality said on her Tuesday edition of her SiriusXM podcast “The Megyn Kelly Show.” “She’s the most racist person on television. It’s amazing. Maybe she just doesn’t see color,” Kelly added. “Anyway, he’s not Black, but according to her, he is.”
However, no one was off limits from Kelly’s cynicism as she quipped that Mike McDaniel, the Dolphins’ head coach is biracial. “Oh, and by the way, his coach isn’t white either,” Kelly said.
Tagovailoa was born to Galu and Diane Tagovailoa, the oldest of four children of Samoan descent and is from Ewa Beach, a small city on the island of O’ahu, the third-most northern of the Hawaiian islands. He played for Saint Louis School in Honolulu, which also produced Atlanta Falcons quarterback Marcus Mariota.
However, Cross included Tagovailoa into the category of non-white and expendable to the NFL system of owners when Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel sent Tua back on the field for the second half of the Week 4 game against the Buffalo Bills. Four days later, he followed that up in Cincinnati by putting Tua in the game for him to be chased down and thrown to the turf by Cincinnati’s Josh Tupou in the first half of the Week four game. He remained down for more than seven minutes, then was taken to a hospital with head and neck injuries.
Then McDaniel’s comments after the incident made many cringe.
“It’s one of those things that you recognize as part of my job,” McDaniel said after the Cincinnati game. “I don’t do anything without being extremely accountable and hard on myself. I can say with conviction certain things because I go back and I make sure that the due diligence, that I’ve done everything correctly with all the information given.”
Tagovailoa has consulted with four independent specialists, including the top sports concussion neurologist and the top neuropsychologist since the injury. Ironically, Dolphins backup quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who does identify as Black, is also in concussion protocol and questionable for this weekend’s game at home against the Vikings.
Cross’s statement is more about a lack of concern for athletes’ welfare and the racial disparities permeating the league than simply labeling Tagovailoa as Black. Still, Kelly found a hole in her argument and exploited it.
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