The Cincinnati Bengals are set to take on the Miami Dolphins in a pivotal early-season AFC showdown on Thursday night.

All eyes are on Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and whether or not he’ll play this week.

Tagovailoa suffered an apparent head injury in Miami’s win against Buffalo on Sunday. He also reportedly has an ankle issue and a back issue.

But he’s going to do his best to play against the Bengals.

Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel told reporters on Tuesday that if Tua doesn’t play, he’ll know that there was just simply no physical way he could play.

If Tua can’t go, Miami would start Teddy Bridgewater at quarterback.

McDaniel noted that he’s “optimistic” Tua will play.

If Tua doesn’t play, this game will dramatically tilt in Cincinnati’s favor. Tua makes the offense go and without him, the Dolphins aren’t nearly as scary.

The former Alabama quarterback, who lost to Joe Burrow in 2019 when the Crimson Tide fell to Burrow’s LSU Tigers, is a tough player. But it might be too much to ask him to play just a few days after nearly getting knocked out of the Bills game. And it could be risky for Miami. The last thing they want to do is lose him for the season.

We’ll keep an eye on this until Thursday, but for now, it appears that Tua is going to try to give it a go.

Featured image via USA TODAY NETWORK