Miami Dolphins wide receiver Danny Amendola says his decision to leave the New England Patriots as a free agent this offseason was made in part due to much lesser contract offer he received from the Pats.
Amendola, who played for New England for five seasons, taking numerous pay cuts in that span, joined Miami on a two-year, $12 million deal with $8.25 million in bonuses and guarantees.
“I came in with an open mind,” Amendola told ESPN. “I understand Bill [Belichick] runs a tight ship, and he hasn’t been known to pay his players, really. I understood that I gave money back to him so I could play for him and play for my teammates and fulfill my side of the contract, and at the end of the day, I had faith that he was going to give me an opportunity to stay.
“When free agency broke, I came to the realization that he wasn’t going to really come close to any of the other offers I had. I had to make a decision for my family and go down to Miami and continue my career there.”
Amendola also noted how tough it was to play for Belichick, whom he deemed “an [expletive] sometimes.”
“There were a lot of things I didn’t like about playing for him, but I must say, the things I didn’t like were all in regards to getting the team better, and I respected him,” Amendola said. “I didn’t like practicing in the snow, I didn’t like practicing in the rain, but that was going to make us a better football team and that was going to make me a better football player.
“It wasn’t easy, and he’d be the first to admit, at the [Super Bowl] ring ceremony, that it wasn’t easy playing for him. The silver lining was that we were at the ring ceremony.”
In the interview, Amendola touched on cornerback Malcolm Butler’s benching in Super Bowl LII, saying he still doesn’t know why the move was made despite asking for an explanation. He spoke in support of Butler, saying he “would have loved to see him on the field that day.”
Amendola, 32, also shared his excitement on joining the Dolphins. He’ll be among the options counted on to replace the production of slot receiver Jarvis Landry, who was traded to the Cleveland Browns this offseason.
“I’m not the oldest guy on the team, but I’ve been around for a while, and I know what it takes to win a championship, I know what it takes to have a successful atmosphere,” Amendola said.
–Field Level Media