NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported that Tagovailoa tweaked his back in the first quarter, and a hit by Bills linebacker Matt Milano caused his back to lock up and led to him stumbling. After going into the locker room for a concussion check, Tagovailoa was fully cleared and allowed to return to the game, per Rapoport.
Milano hit Tagovailoa at the end of a pass play, and the quarterback went to the ground hard, with the back of his helmet appearing to hit the turf. Tagovailoa stumbled after the play and headed to the locker room with a few minutes left in the first half. He was initially announced as questionable to return, but came back onto the field for the third quarter.
As noted by NFL Network Insider Tom Pelissero, the NFL-NFL Players Association concussion protocol states that gross motor instability means a player cannot return to a game if "[d]etermined by team physician, in consultation with the UNC (unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant), to be neurologically caused." In Tagovailoa's case, doctors determined it was not neurologically caused, Pelissero added.
Backup Teddy Bridgewater came in at QB while Tagovailoa was out, taking three snaps before Miami punted to end the possession.
Tagovailoa finished 13-of-18 for 186 yards and a touchdown in the victory, as Miami moved to 3-0.