Danny Amendola on how he’s moving forward after the Dolphins’ loss to the New England Patriots
It was more than a bit of surreal to see Danny Amendola — corporate spokesman — make the rounds at radio row here this week.
Particularly with many of his closest friends a few miles away, preparing for yet another Super Bowl.
Amendola, the longtime Patriot-turned-Dolphin, was in town to promote Hyundai’s new luxury vehicle.
And he attacked that job like he does his full-time gig: with professionalism and intensity.
But he had to be at least a little bit sad, knowing that Tom Brady, Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski were about to play in the nation’s biggest game.
Granted, Amendola wasn’t forced to sign a two-year, $12 million contract with the Dolphins this offseason. He knew their recent history of mediocrity.
But that doesn’t change the fact that the guy who has made some of the biggest catches for the Patriots the past five years has been diminished, at least competitively, by that business decision.
“It’s different. .... As a competitor, I don’t know if there is a good part of not playing,” Amendola told Pro Football Talk. “It’s why I play, it’s why I prepare all offseason, all camp, to reach that end goal. It’s not a good feeling, but it’s something that 30 teams got to live with. There’s only one happy team at the end of the year.”
Will the Patriots be that happy team?
We will find out Sunday.
But win or lose, some core pieces of that franchise acknowledged this week that it’s not the same without Amendola.
“You’re happy for him and his career, but you definitely get sad not having him,” Edelman said. “You spend a lot of time and develop relationship. He’s one of the boys.”
Added Rob Gronkowski: “Danny’s great. We miss Danny for sure. But I mean, every year there’s always new guy, new players, old players gone. It’s not weird. There are players that were here that aren’t here anymore. I’ve been in the league for awhile now, seen a lot. Definitely miss him, but it’s not weird that he’s gone.”
Amendola was asked by PFT’s Mike Florio about Brian Flores, who will be announced as the Dolphins’ next coach as soon as Monday. Flores was an assistant coach for the Patriots all five years Amendola was on the team, albeit on the other side of the ball.
“If it’s B-Flo, then we’re all going to be excited to have him in the building,” Amendola said. “You know what he brings to the table. He’s tough, he’s smart, he relates well to the players. We would all be excited to have them.”