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Mike Tannenbaum (L ’95) returning to NFL with Dolphins

January 09, 2015

TLC 1214 SportsLaw Mike400

Mike Tannenbaum (L ’95), former New York Jets general manager, has been named the Miami Dolphins' new executive vice president of football operations.

Photo by Nancy Borowick, Courtesy of Priority Sports 

Sports agent Mike Tannenbaum (L ’95) is headed back to the National Football League after two years representing football and basketball coaches in high-level job negotiations.

The Miami Dolphins announced that Tannenbaum will become their new executive vice president of football operations effective Feb. 1.

Tannenbaum told reporters that “Football's in my blood. I spent two years away from it, and I missed it dearly.”

Tannenbaum, who came to Tulane for its Sports Law program, joined the New York Jets after law school and rose to general manager in 2006-12. Working from New Jersey, he spent the last two years with Priority Sports, one of the country’s premier agencies and has been leading its coaches, front office and broadcasters division.

He also has been instrumental in helping Tulane Law expand internship opportunities in the sports industry. During the summer and fall of 2014, for instance, law student Kyle Wallace, who’s completing a dual JD/MBA degree, worked with Tannenbaum on a database of college coaches’ contracts to assist in negotiations on behalf of Priority Sports clients. The job provided real-world immersion into the industry and access to contacts in a highly competitive field.

“There’s nothing like marrying a world-class education and practical education in the field,” said Tannenbaum, who has remained devoted to Tulane Law. A Jets jersey that he donated is displayed in Weinmann Hall’s main corridor, alongside a Los Angeles Kings hockey jersey presented by Kings General Manager Dean Lombardi (L ’85).

Tannenbaum said that in law school he gained hands-on training (working for the New Orleans Saints) and valuable legal knowledge (such as learning about the collective bargaining agreements that govern pro sports for athletes and team owners), which helped him fulfill his dream of working in the NFL.

Since August, he’s juggled his role as an agent with consultant work for the Dolphins, who’ve finished 8-8 the past two seasons. While Tannenbaum was Jets GM, the team reached the playoffs three times, including AFC Championship games in 2009 and 2010.    

“I am excited that Mike Tannenbaum has joined the organization full time,” Dolphins owner Stephen Ross said on www.miamidolphins.com. “He is an experienced executive and leader who understands all facets of the sports landscape. During his time as a consultant this past season, I was able to see his impact first-hand through his commitment and passion for innovation and using every possible avenue to find competitive edges.”

Professor Gabe Feldman, director of the Sports Law program, said Tannenbaum “has been a tremendous supporter of the Tulane Sports Law program over the last two decades and has served as an invaluable resource to our students and alumni who are attempting to follow in his successful footsteps.”


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