There has been an assortment of reports stating that Tom Brady had plans to both wreak havoc on Bill Belichick and get into the ownership side of the NFL.
A story from the Boston Globe’s Ben Volin accuses Brady of a multi-step ploy to retire from the NFL, join the Miami Dolphins’ ownership group, then hire Sean Payton, un-retire and play for the Dolphins.
What changed was Brian Flores’ lawsuit against the NFL, which came hours after Brady’s retirement announcement. Essentially, that lawsuit put too much heat on Brady and Ross to carry out such a scheme.
Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk speculates that some of the steps the Dolphins took may have amounted to tampering.
“Many believe that Brady is the unnamed quarterback in the (Brian) Flores lawsuit with whom owner Stephen Ross wanted Flores to tamper in 2020. If the Dolphins had a plan that started with Brady becoming a post-retirement minority owner and ended with Brady coming out of retirement to play for the team, there surely were one or more impermissible communications between the Dolphins and/or Brady and/or his agent, Don Yee (who also represents Payton),” ProFootballTalk summarized.
Tampering in the NFL is frowned upon, but rarely ever enforced. At the most, we have seen owners get fined and possibly lose a few draft picks. Not nearly enough to actually stop tampering from happening.
Since the plan fell through, Brady returned to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before free agency. Reports indicated that his return saw Bruce Arians take a backseat as he announced he would no longer be the team’s head coach.