Tua Tagovailoa’s day in the SEC Championship has seemingly come to an end as he lay on the turf in the fourth quarter.
On a first down incompletion to Henry Ruggs, Tagovailoa was blocked into by his offensive lineman Jonah Williams and rolled his ankle. He remained down for several minutes before limping off.
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At the time of the injury, Tagovailoa was 10-of-25 with 164 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions. He threw two interceptions in 269 regular-season snaps.
Jalen Hurts, who was removed in the second-half of last season’s National Championship game in favor of Tagovailoa, entered as the backup.
Alabama’s drive, trailing 28-21 at the time, gained traction under Hurts. On the first few plays to follow, he had two completions and 47 passing yards. Alabama scored on the drive to tie the game.
Most of Hurts’ snaps throughout the regular season have come in the games Alabama won handily. He has 673 passing yards and two interceptions on the season.
It marked the third time Tagovailoa suffered an injury in the game, but his latest was the most substantial.
Alabama’s sophomore quarterback threw a third-down interception to Georgia safety Richard LeCounte, then went directly to the injury tent. Shortly after suffering the injury, Tagovailoa was seen jogging toward his offensive line on the sideline and returned on the following drive.
Tagovailoa re-entered the tent after Alabama punted on its next drive. Tagovailoa has had injury issues throughout the season, specifically with a returning knee ailment.
Against Auburn, he shed a knee brace and was able to play at full strength. This injury, however, looked to be in regard to his ankle.
“He doesn’t have a lot of pain or anything like that,” Alabama head coach Nick Saban said in Friday’s press conference at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. “As far as I’m concerned, he’s medically cleared.”
It marked only Tagovailoa’s third interception of the season. He is a Heisman contender with 3,189 passing yards and 36 touchdowns for the Crimson Tide.