TUSCALOOSA, Ala. –Tua Tagovailoawasn’t present during Wednesday’s brief media viewing period, but the Alabama quarterback did, in fact, participate in parts of practice.
“Tua was able to take some snaps today at practice, did a few things on air, was not involved in any team situations,” head coachNick Sabansaid. “And again, this is going to be a day-by-day, game-day decision. There’s nothing really else that I can say about it.
“I can tell you that his mentality has been really good in terms of how he’s working, the things that he’s doing and how he’s progressing and his attitude toward trying to get back on the field and trying to progress . So, that’s always a good sign. ”
On Sunday, Oct. 20, Tagovailoa underwent a procedure to repair a high ankle sprain on the right ankle he injured against Tennessee. He did not play in Alabama’s 48 – 7 win over Arkansas this past weekend but was on the sideline, cheering on his teammates in a walking boot. Before the last game, Saban said Tagovailoa is “doing even better than expected” in his rehab.
Tagovailoa said he would be back in time to play No. 1 LSU on Nov. 9 prior to his surgery – a tight-rope procedure Saban and company have become familiar with in recent years.
“We’ve had a lot of success with this surgery in the past,” Saban said. “I think maybeCam Robinsonmight’ve been one of the first guys to get it, probably, three or four years ago. He had a high ankle sprain in the Tennessee game and played LSU in two weeks, and he played every play in the game. So, a little different for an offensive lineman as it might be for a skill guy.
“But it really has enhanced the ability for our guys to come back and they haven’t had any issues or problems in the future.”
Before his lone press conference of the second of two bye weeks ended, Saban was asked two questions about evaluating players that are coming back injuries that also have NFL futures like Tagovailoa. The second question was how does he handle chronic situations?
“I don’t know that that’s the type of injury he has,” Saban said. “There’s no history of that in this injury. But I think to get to your point is, look, we’ve had a lot of players around here that have gone on and done extremely well in the NFL and been high draft picks.
“But I guess the question would be, did they create value for themselves by being great competitors, always making choices and decisions that were best for their team, always making choices and decisions that were best for themselves in terms of what they can do to contribute to creating value to their team? And people still value guys that want to always make the right decision about what they do.
“I know the eight years I was in the league people always said the warrior mentality – this guy is really tough, he plays hard, he can play and things don’t bother him, he’s not going to be on the guidelines if he gets a little nicked up or whatever. I’m not saying every player is capable of that and I’m not saying every player is like that. But the question is, what really creates value for you? If you can’t go out there and play with any consistency and you don’t have durability as a player, is that a positive or a negative? There’s another side of that to look at.
“… Tua has always done everything around here that he can actually do to help the team and he’s always made great choices and decisions. He’s smart. He’s bright. And I don’t think that he would put himself in a position, nor would we want to put him in a position, where what he does moving forward would have any effect on his future. ”
Tagovailoa and Alabama will return to the practice field Thursday, Oct. 31, at 2: 40 PM CT.
Contact Charlie Potter by (Sports’ personal messaging or on Twitter)@ Charlie_Potter).