Dolphins owner putting 16 players through “business combine” this week

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Dolphins owner Stephen Ross wants to help his players succeed in the future. But he also thinks his latest venture could help the team in the present.

Via Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald, Ross is hosting 16 of his players for a “business combine” this week in New York to give them some insight into future opportunities beyond their playing days.

The players ranged from quarterback Ryan Tannehill and defensive end Cameron Wake to fringe players and free agents. Ross connected the players with area business leaders, put them in meetings and took them out of the office to explore real estate and other opportunities. Six players signed up for last year’s version.

“This is really to give them an insight into what business is about,” Ross said. “I mean, don’t forget, these guys have concentrated their college and their professional football careers into becoming better football players and have been kind of shielded a little bit from the business world.

“This is really to create them and develop them so that when they do make the transition out of football they’re better prepared. I think every owner should have the responsibility of developing them not only as football players but also after their careers and as people. That way it’s better for them, it’s better for the team, it’s great to see these guys that are so passionate for what they do and the capabilities they have, how they use it to start the next level.”

Ross said he thought getting a group of players together outside the football function could help with camaraderie and relationships, and having his quarterback and defensive leader on board will help in that regard. Players are paying their own way, since Ross picking up the bill would circumvent the salary cap.

“Well, I mean, and with what the team is doing, it kind of brings them together,” Ross said. “And, you know, I think they experience these type of things together, they become closer together and they realize what the organization does and they’re more committed to the Miami Dolphins.

“And certainly, I think, when other players outside when they’re looking to see what teams they’d like to play for, it doesn’t hurt. Because the word spreads. When I was speaking yesterday [at a business conference for NFL players in Ann Arbor] and the amount of players that came up to me and we spoke. Because I was there speaking, I think they really appreciate it.”

More players should take advantage of such opportunities to parlay their football money into a future beyond their playing days. And Ross is right, there should be a responsibility for owners to put them in such positions, after profiting handsomely from their athletic gifts during the short time players can trade on those.

25 responses to “Dolphins owner putting 16 players through “business combine” this week

  1. Well done Mr Ross. I would hope other teams follow suit since the NFL shows no interest in any player not on a roster generating revenue.

  2. not sure if Ross will ever be popular among the majority of Dolphin fans…. but he’s really a good owner, not cheap, innovative, committed and what I like the most an outside the box guy.

    the work he did with the stadium, backing the players who kneeled down and his work with RISE is really cool.

    props – this Dolphins fan is happy to have you as an owner

  3. The NFL/NFLPA should make an exception to the cap for this. It benefits everyone to prepare the players for their post playing days. Not everyone will leave the game having made over $100 million.

    The fringe players can’t afford to do this on their own. But they need help the most.

  4. Go ahead and make fun of this, but the reality is they can’t all work in the Broadcast Booth, own a Car Dealership or make horribly bad restaurant investments.

  5. One of the best owners that nobody talks about. Put $400 mill of his own money to renovate the stadium while other owners just pout and leave town, does a ton in charitable donations for the city and his Alma mater Michigan and really does care for his players and team. Giving his players the opportunity to learn a craft that would allow them to still work and make money after football is commendable. So many stories of players going bankrupt because of a lack of education (even though they were offered a free one) or lack of money management skills. Good to see and let’s hope other owners follow suit.

  6. This is actually a brilliant original initiative. Stephen Ross is a great self made billionaire and this is about teaching players about business and helping to prepare them for life after football. Some of the players taking part are already wealthy, but that doesn’t mean that they understand business or wealth creation.
    The players taking part are there because they want to learn.

  7. I’ve always thought they should be doing this. Of course, some owners have no business experience whatsoever (Irsay comes to mind) but they could bring in outside people.

  8. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Stephen Ross is actually doing something smart. Is the moon blood red or whatever they say in Revelation out there? Oh God.

  9. I think this is awesome. It reminds me of the old saying “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime”. I’ve always wondered why the NFLPA wasn’t doing stuff like this. Good job Mr. Ross!!!

  10. It’s refreshing to see an owner that wants to give back to the players that have worked so hard instead of using them like cattle. It has taken Mr Ross a few years to get his NFL ownership education, but with this move he is educating the other owners in class and appreciation. Makes me proud to be a longtime Finfan!

  11. He has not exactly run a great franchise there, but this is a great idea and would serve many owners well to copy. I do wonder though what a guy like Mike Brown tells his guys…”well guys, if your dad is a legend that’s the best way to be successful in business”. Jed York says “if your parents are rich, and they can force your Godfather out of the business he was very successful with, you’ll be fine in business”.

  12. Ross is a king of real estate in NYC. Have to assume that the visits will includes his ongoing development on the West Side that is about the largest private one ever in New York City history. So after it is all over, the players should respect that Ross is about a whole lot more than just the team. They probably already knew that but there is something about seeing it.

  13. If the players have a question, Stephen Ross is all ears

    I don’t care if your a Dolphins fan or not, that was funny as hell!

  14. I never thought he was much of an in-touch and winning owner, but with his actions lately, I’ve changed my mind.

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