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DAVIE (CBSMiami) – The Miami Dolphins are celebrating their 50th season and one of special things they are doing is selecting the top 50 players in team history.
The list is created by four different groups who vote on the composition of the team. The groups are fans, Dolphins alumni, South Florida media and a select blue ribbon panel.
Each group represents 25% of the overall vote.
Every week over a ten week span, five players on the 50th anniversary team will be announced leading up to the Dolphins home game against the New York Giants on Monday, December 14th.
The entire top 50 team will be honored as part of a tribute to the 50 seasons of Miami Dolphins football.
In addition, the Dolphins will be wearing throwback uniforms that night for only the second time in franchise history.
So far there have been ten players named to the team. Dick Anderson, Mark Clayton, Mark Duper, O.J. McDuffie and Jake Scott were the first five, followed by Nick Buoniconti, Larry Csonka, Bob Griese, Jim Mandich and Dan Marino.
On Tuesday the team announced the next five players. They are Doug Betters, Bryan Cox, Bob Kuechenberg, Tony Nathan and Richmond Webb.
Betters played ten seasons for the Dolphins, from 1978 to 1987, at defensive end. He was a member of Miami’s famed ‘Killer B’s’ defense. Betters ranks third on the Dolphins all-time sack list with 65.5. In 1983 he was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year and was selected to that year’s Pro Bowl.
“It’s a real honor to be recognized as one of the 50 Dolphins greats, especially considering the success of the franchise over the years,” Betters said. “I’m very humbled and proud to be a member of that team and will continue to support and be a part of the Dolphins family for the rest of my life.”
Cox only played five seasons with Miami but he certainly made his presence known every time he took the field in a Dolphins uniform. He started all 77 games in which he played for Miami, recording 31.5 sacks during his Dolphins career. He also led the team in tackles in four of his five seasons and led them in sacks twice, including 1992 when he finished with 14. Cox made three Pro Bowls during his time with the Dolphins.
“It’s a tremendous honor to be mentioned with the greatest players in the history of the league. I say the league because so many of the players are Hall of Famers. It just great to be mentioned in the same breath with those guys,” Cox said.
Kuchenberg was with the Dolphins for 15 seasons, paying both left tackle and left guard. The only players to appear and start in more games with Miami than Kuchenberg are Dan Marino and Jason Taylor. Kuchenberg played on four of the five Dolphins teams that made it to the Super Bowl, missing only Super Bowl XIX against San Francisco. One of his amazing stats is that he was called for just 15 holding penalties during his entire career. Kuchenberg was named to six Pro Bowls and was inducted into the Dolphins Honor Roll in 1995.
“I have been blessed at every level of my football career to have had master teachers as my mentors, especially Don Shula and Monte Clark during my tenure with the Dolphins. Monte was the greatest teacher that I have ever studied under in any facet of my life. He took five castoffs – all of us had been released by other teams in the NFL – and forged those five castoffs into arguably the greatest offensive line in NFL history,” Kuechenberg said.
“It is truly special to have been a small part of the unique perfection that the 1972 Dolphins created, and it is the greatest honor of my life to have been a member of that team. The perfection achieved by the ‘72 Dolphins was accomplished by a unique group of individuals. My teammates were absolutely selfless when it came to putting the best interest of the team ahead of their individual careers. I’m honored to be named to the Dolphins’ all-time team, but it would not have been possible without the great players and coaches that I was fortunate to work with during my Dolphin career.”
Nathan played running back for the Dolphins for nine seasons, accumulating 3,543 rushing yards and 383 receptions for 3,592 receiving yards during his time with Miami. He remains the only player in Dolphins history to rank in the top ten for both rushing yards and receptions. In 1985 Nathan led the Dolphins in both rushing and receiving. He started in both of the Dolphins Super Bowl appearances in the 1980’s and was inducted into the Dolphins Honor Roll in 2014.
“I had great teammates and a great coach and it all played a part in having success in what you do,” Nathan said. “I want to thank those who voted for me and I greatly appreciate it. It’s great to be honored by your peers and the fans.”
Webb played eleven seasons with the Dolphins, making 162 starts at left tackle, the fifth most in team history. He also started 118 consecutive games from 1991 to 1998. Webb was selected to seven straight Pro Bowls from 1990 to 1996 which is the longest consecutive Pro Bowl streak in Dolphins history. He was inducted into the Dolphins Honor Roll in 2006.
“First of all, I would like to say thanks to everyone who voted for me. I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to be mentioned with the type of players who were named to the team. It truly is an honor,” Webb said. “I know you can’t be successful in football by yourself. I had a great group of players and coaches who supported me, along with our fans, and I want to say thank you to all of them.”
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