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If Stephen Ross steps out, Bruce Beal most likely steps in (and possibly Tom Brady, as a minority owner)

Mike Florio thinks we will see Tom Brady again very soon even if he stays retired, as he could set his sights on becoming a very active owner of an NFL team.

With Dolphins owner Stephen Ross facing an investigation that could lead to a force sale of the team, he already has a buyer.

Bruce Beal (pictured) will be in line to take over the team, whenever Ross sells his controlling interest.

Beal, as recently explained by the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, has worked with Ross for years in his real-estate company. Beal has held the right to purchase the team since 2016.

First, Ross must decide to sell. (Two years ago, he said he wouldn’t sell the team in his lifetime.) Before he’s actually forced to sell, Ross possibly would choose to voluntarily cash out.

With the NFL investigating the claim from former Dolphins coach Brian Flores that Ross offered $100,000 for each loss in 2019 and given the sense that the contention will be corroborated, Ross arguably would be wise to walk away before the probe creates evidence that an ambitious prosecutor could then use to secure an indictment of Ross for violating the federal Sports Bribery Act.

Ultimately, it comes down to how committed Ross would be to fighting the outcome. With no one to whom he intends to bequeath the team, it’s simply a question of whether he gets the money before or after he dies.

Regardless of when Beal gets the team, one name to watch will be Tom Brady. There’s a lingering belief that Beal’s acquisition of the Dolphins would be followed by Beal selling a sliver of it to Brady. As Brady’s fortune continues to grow, he could potentially secure controlling ownership of the Dolphins or maybe buy some other team.