Sports

Dolphins Should Sign Tom Brady to Mentor Tua Tagovailoa, Change Culture

There might not be many ideas that make us feel dirtier, but there have certainly been worse ones.
There might not be many ideas that make us feel dirtier, but there have certainly been worse ones. Photo by Michael Reaves / Getty
We understand you're upset. We get it: You saw the title of this article, clicked it, and planned to be outraged that anyone would suggest Miami should sign Tom Brady — inflicter of two decades of anguish and pain on the Dolphins organization and its fans — to a contract for next season, one he would begin as a 43-year-old.

If we're being honest, we're a little upset at ourselves for thinking it makes sense. But it does, so let's talk about it.

The immediate emotional response to bringing Brady (football Darth Vader) over to the good side (Miami) is an emphatic hell, no. The Dolphins are rebuilding a franchise and will likely do whatever it takes to use their highest draft pick to select Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Tua Tagovailoa in the upcoming draft. The Dolphins also already have Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh Rosen under contract for next season. That's a lot of quarterbacks.

But Dolphins coach Brian Flores knows Brady well. Flores spent his entire coaching career with the New England Patriots until joining Miami this past season. He spent years doing nothing but battling Brady and the Pats' offense in practice. The feather in Flores' cap after a 5-11 season is he seems to have instilled a Patriots-like culture in Miami that has a lot of promise. Can you imagine what bringing Brady to Miami and allowing him to add to that culture would be like?
Signing Brady would be about progress from Monday through Saturday, not Sunday. It would be about showing younger Dolphins players how to prepare and be professional. Let's hops that roster of young players would include Tagovailoa, who played under Nick Saban at Alabama — basically the college version of the Patriots. Sure, Fitzpatrick is fun and a true professional, but he's not on the same planet as Brady in terms of leadership, and he definitely doesn't have the same clout.


In addition to what Brady could bring to the locker room, imagine the absolute joy he would take in trying to defeat a New England Patriots franchise that let him leave in free agency. He threw for more than 4,000 yards this season, and he's not done. There are reports that Miami wants to move more toward a running game anyway. It sounds like a match made in heaven for a veteran quarterback without a home.

If the Dolphins signed Brady, they could likely recoup an asset for Fitzpatrick. Even at his age, he proved last season to be capable. There would likely be a team willing to trade a late-round draft pick for a back-up quarterback they know they could count on in an emergency. As far as Rosen, he could stick around and back up Brady as Tagovailoa continues to recover from a hip injury. Rosen is already on a cheap contract for next season, and his trade value is almost zero after two horrid years at the beginning of his career.

The Miami Dolphins want to be more like the Miami Heat in terms of culture and more like the New England Patriots in terms of everything else. The Fins have already stolen multiple coaches from New England — now might be the time to think about stealing their Dwyane Wade and asking him to come down to the retirement capital of the United States to finish his career and tutor the Dolphins into the future.

There might not be many ideas that make us feel dirtier, but there have certainly been worse ones. 
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Ryan Yousefi is a freelance writer for Miami New Times, a lover of sports, and an expert consumer of craft beer and pho. Hanley Ramirez once stole a baseball from him and to this day still owes him $10.
Contact: Ryan Yousefi