DAVIE, Fla. — For Brady Quinn, this was a long time coming.
On the eve of the 2007 NFL draft, Quinn said he was told by “a very, very good source” that he would be taken by the Miami Dolphins — who then, somewhat famously, passed on him and chose Ted Ginn Jr. with their first-round selection, a move that drew immediate jeers from fans at the team’s draft party.
There was no jeering Tuesday.
Quinn completed his signing with the Dolphins in the morning, then hit the practice field with his new club for the first time and started what basically becomes a competition with Matt Moore to become Miami’s backup quarterback behind starter Ryan Tannehill this season.
“To be honest with you, I thought I was going to Miami,” Quinn said of his draft-day experience, which eventually saw him land with Cleveland, 13 picks after Miami went with Ginn. “It’s kind of crazy to think almost eight years later now, I finally made it here.”
The Dolphins are Quinn’s seventh NFL club, although he’s only thrown passes in real games for two others — the Browns, from 2007 through 2009, and Kansas City in parts of 10 games during the 2012 season.
To accommodate the Quinn signing, the Dolphins placed quarterback Pat Devlin on the waived/injured list.
“The expectation is to get him immersed in the system and acclimated to how we do things from a schematic standpoint as quickly as we possibly can so we can get a good evaluation of him,” said Dolphins coach Joe Philbin, whose team visits Tampa Bay in a preseason game Saturday night. “He came in, he had a very good workout, it seems to be a good fit as an individual, although reports we hear from locker room standpoint is that he’s an excellent teammate.”
Moore, who has been dealing with a shoulder issue but reported Tuesday that he is feeling much better, took the competition in stride.
“Dude, I’ve been through this too many times,” said Moore, who is due to make $4 million this season. “It’s nothing. What do you want me to do? They’re going to do what they think they need to do. All I can do is keep going. But it really has no effect. If it does, I’m in trouble. Mentally, I think I just need to stay focused and continue to get better.”
Quinn last played Dec. 30, 2012, with Kansas City. He spent time last season with Seattle, St. Louis and the New York Jets, though did not appear with any of those clubs.
There is a certain symmetry to him being with the Dolphins, and not just because the former Notre Dame star was widely expected to be in Miami’s draft class in 2007. He’s newly married and he and his wife have been living in Fort Lauderdale, just a few miles from the Dolphins’ facility.
“I had a couple of workouts, a couple of opportunities and this ended up being the best situation for me,” said Quinn, who was planning to work with Fox this season. “I’ve actually lived down here now for about five years in the offseason. It’s close to home to me per se and just getting married this past March makes it even better being able to be close to my wife.”
Quinn’s NFL career numbers are far from stellar: He’s thrown 12 touchdown passes and had 17 interceptions, with a rating of 64.4.
His confidence isn’t waning, however. He’s still convinced that he can help an NFL team.
“I’ve always hoped for an opportunity to be able to play in this league and play at a high level,” Quinn said. “I felt like I really did that last preseason in Seattle. I had an opportunity to go out there, we all, the three in that quarterback room really played really well. Unfortunately, they only kept two and that was the end of that. But I really felt like I was playing some of my best football last preseason. Hopefully, I can continue that into this season.”