The NFL has seen a major investigation come to a close in recent days.

This led to a highly anticipated decision after six months of investigation by a former U.S. Attorney and SEC Chair Mary Jo White.

And the NFL has found unprecedented tampering violations by the Dolphins in their quest for Brady.

The NFL has docked the team’s first- and third-round draft picks, suspended team owner Stephen Ross until mid-October, and fined him $1.5 million.

White and her team found the team innocent of “tanking” but guilty of tampering for improperly engaging in conversations with Tom Brady while he was a member of the New England Patriots in 2019 and again in 2021 when Brady was under contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

It was also determined that the Dolphins tampered with Sean Payton while he was still coaching the Saints by reaching out to his agent Don Yee.

Miami had wished to bring in Brady to play quarterback and Payton to coach him.

Circumstances scuttled the team’s plan, so the Dolphins instead had to settle for Mike McDaniel on the sidelines and Tua Tagovailoa at QB.

The Dolphins spent three years illegally attempting to get No. 12 to come to Miami but failed in their attempts.

Now, the team is paying the price with draft picks and Ross is paying his hefty fine.

Miami vice chairman Bruce Beal was also fined $500,000.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said, “The investigators found tampering violations of unprecedented scope and severity. I know of no prior instance of a team violating the prohibition on tampering with both a head coach and star player, to the potential detriment of multiple other clubs, over a period of several years. Similarly, I know of no prior instance in which ownership was so directly involved in the violations.”

In a statement, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross begrudgingly accepted his punishment.

Brady spoke with ESPN in June about the prospect about recruited to join the Dolphins and he said, “I had a lot of conversations with a lot of people, I’ve had for the last three or four years of my career, about different opportunities when I’m done playing football, so, I kind of made a decision of what I’d like to do, and I’ll get to be in the game of football.”

One thing for sure is that more questions will soon be forthcoming.

Sports with Balls will keep you up-to-date on any developments to this ongoing story.