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Tom Brady was just linked to an NFL scandal. Again

NFL investigators determined that the Dolphins violated anti-tampering rules by contacting the quarterback

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady throws a pass during a team practice on July 28, 2022.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady throws a pass during NFL football training camp, Thursday, July 28, 2022, in Tampa, Fla.

Chris O’Meara, Associated Press

Tom Brady was named in yet another NFL report on rule violations Tuesday, when league investigators cited the Miami Dolphins’ communications with the quarterback to justify taking away two of the team’s future draft picks.

While investigating tampering and tanking allegations, league officials determined that Miami Dolphins leaders impermissibly spoke with Brady and his agent multiple times from 2019 to 2021.

“Those discussions ... focused on Mr. Brady becoming a limited partner in the Dolphins and possibly serving as a football executive, although at times they also included the possibility of his playing for the Dolphins,” the NFL’s report said.

Brady is not facing a suspension or fine for his involvement in the conversations, but Dolphins owner Stephen Ross was fined $1.5 million and banned from team facilities until Oct. 17.

Past scandals involving Tom Brady

This week is not the first time the seven-time Super Bowl champion has had his name brought up in connection to an NFL scandal. Brady, who now plays for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, was involved in two major investigations during his time in New England.

The first, which is often referred to as “Spygate,” centered on the coaching staff’s actions rather than the quarterback’s. The league determined that the team had illegally taped New York Jets coaches in 2007 in order to collect information on their signaling. The team was fined $250,000 and lost a first-round draft pick, and coach Bill Belichick was fined $500,000.

The second, known as “Deflategate,” involved allegations that the team had illegally deflated footballs at Brady’s request. “Brady ultimately served a four-game suspension because the NFL believed he was ‘generally aware’ of the scheme,” ESPN reported.

Some NFL analysts have argued that scandals like these will tarnish memories of Brady’s career after he leaves the game behind.

“If (Brady) ever does retire, he’ll do so holding many ... records that no other quarterback can even hope to match. Just remember that even the greats aren’t necessarily perfect,” wrote Associated Press columnist Tim Dahlberg in 2021.