MIAMI -- The Miami Dolphins began their offseason program Monday with a special guest in attendance. Former UFC light heavyweight champion and South Florida resident Rashad Evans got the first peek at the Dolphins as they begin their 2016 journey under rookie head coach Adam Gase.
Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill, defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh and Gase were among those Evans spent some time with Monday. Evans also will be the main-event attraction Saturday in nearby Tampa, Fla. when he faces Glover Teixeira in a big fight in the light heavyweight division, which can be seen at 8 p.m. ET on FOX.
“It was good to see those guys training and chop it up with them a little bit,” Evans told ESPN.com of his Dolphins visit. “It’s also good to see other professionals and how they handle business. It was a good experience.”
More and more NFL players are training in mixed martial arts and have interest in the sport. For example, Dolphins Pro Bowl center Mike Pouncey and twin his brother, Maurkice, trained with the Blackzillians, which is the gym Evans helped create in South Florida. Evans said both sports are similar in the physical pounding and learning how to successfully use leverage.
When asked which Dolphins player would best make the transition to a UFC fighter, Evans' answer was immediate.
“I think Ndamukong Suh would be a good transition athlete,” Evans explained. “He has that mental mindset where he can hit the switch, and that’s what it takes to be a fighter. I think he would be good at it.”