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The 1972 Dolphins: Where Are They Now?

As the NFL season draws to a close, the 1972 Miami Dolphins breathe a sigh of relief; Another year has passed and, nearly three and a half decades later, they remain the only professional soccer team to have achieved perfection. Over the years, a few teams — the Bears, the Broncos, the Colts, and the Colts once again — have made the Dolphins sweat profusely at the mouth of their wingers; these teams have come close but no cigars, especially Don Shula’s.

It’s safe to say that all members of the 1972 Dolphins retired and moved on to other companies. Some stay in sports, some get involved in completely different activities. No matter where they are and what they’re doing, Dolphins team members still have a place in NFL history… at least for now. This makes us think about them, remembering how they were and wondering what they are doing now.

Bob Griese

An All-Star, a Pro Bowler, six-time Dolphin MVP, Bob Griese was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1984 and the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1990. Known more for his leadership than for his arm, since he spent a little in some games and a lot in others: Bob led Miami to nine winning seasons.

After retiring from football, Bob went on to support Brian’s college and professional football careers, stating that watching Brian win the Rose Bowl was one of the greatest moments of his life. In 2000, he and Brian wrote a book called unbeaten, which discussed the perfect season of Dolphin, as well as the death of Bob’s first wife from breast cancer. Bob is currently an ABC college football analyst and recently appeared on the game show. Wheel of Fortune.

Don Shula

Don Shula, one of the most recognized coaches in the entire world of sports, began his football career with the Cleveland Browns in 1951 as a cornerback. During his playing days, he played for the Browns, Baltimore Colts and Washington Redskins before becoming a coach. In 1963, at the age of 33, Don made history by becoming the youngest person to serve as an NFL head coach. This historic moment was just a foretaste of things to come.

After coaching the Baltimore Colts from 1963 to 1969, Don was signed by the Dolphins. He remained her head coach from 1970 to 1995, a span of years that he is unrivaled. Don currently holds the record for most NFL regular season wins with 328 and most Super Bowls led with six. In 1997, in a move everyone saw coming, Don Shula was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Since retiring, Don now lends his name to a restaurant chain in Florida, Shula’s Steakhouse. He also spends time with Don Shula Foundation, a foundation that works to find a cure for breast cancer. Don formed this organization in 1991 just before his first wife succumbed to the disease.

Lawrence Richard Csonka

In the early 1970s, some men feared the Vietnam draft and others feared Lawrence Csonka. At 6’3, 235 pounds, he was a running back with the ability to run over, or through, defenders. He was also a great blocker and a great receiver, which made him a triple threat on offense. Nominated for five Pro Bowls, Lawrence was an All-Pro in 1971, 1972 and 1973. He was named Super Bowl VIII Most Valuable Player and inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1987. In 1996, in the NFL production films of The 100 Toughest Players in the NFLLawrence claimed the number ten spot.

Since hanging up his shoes, Lawrence has been a motivational speaker, an avid outdoorsman and conservationist, a host of hunting and fishing shows, a General Manager in the United States Soccer League, and an analyst in american gladiators. He is currently president and executive producer of Zonk! productions in Lisbon, Ohio and producer and host of a nature show called North of NAPA to Alaska.

jake scott

For nine seasons, Jake Scott played in the NFL with the Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins. He played free safety and punt returner and made five straight Pro Bowls. While playing with the Dolphins, he had 35 interceptions in six seasons, including two in the Dolphins’ perfect-season Super Bowl victory. Recording 63 return yards in that game as well, Jake was named Super Bowl MVP. In the 1980s, Jake was considered the Dolphins All-Time Neutralizer by NFL Films. He was inducted into the Georgia-Florida Hall of Fame in 1998. Jake currently lives in Hawaii, where he is an investor.

Jim Kiick

Forming a duo with Lawrence Csonka, Jim Kiick was the other part of Miami’s running game. Known, along with Csonka, as “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” Kiick played in Miami from 1968 to 1974. His career was marked by playing in three Super Bowls and racking up rushing yards. In the Dolphin record books, Kiick is still listed as the fourth-best running back of all time.

In later years, his football career was marked by some oddities. These included the signing of Kiick and Csonka with the World Football League. Kiick eventually returned to the NFL, where he was released by the Denver Broncos. Unfortunately, this release came on the same day that Kiick saw his marriage end and his house go up in flames.

In 1996, Kiick was inducted into the University of Wyoming Sports Hall of Fame. He is now president of Kiick sports promotions, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. His agency books line up players for guest appearances.

Nick Buoniconti

A linebacker who played for the Boston Patriots and Miami Dolphins, Nick was instrumental in both play and leadership throughout his career. He was named to the AFL All-Star team in 1969 and to the Pro Bowl in 1972 and 1973. In the latter year, he set a record by making 162 tackles, 91 of which were unassisted. In 2001, he was named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Since his retirement, Nick has served as president of the US Tobacco Company and co-hosted the HBO series, Inside the NFL. Over the past two decades, she has been a pivotal figure in the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. She became part of this foundation when his son Marc was paralyzed during a college football game in 1985. Since then, this foundation has become one of the world’s leading neurological research centers.

Nick is believed to be the most vocal member of the Perfect Season Miami Dolphins team. Rumor has it that he leads a champagne toast every year after the persistently undefeated team suffers its first loss.

Until another team can match an unblemished record, Nick and the rest of the 1972 crew are just bottom-up. The only hope for the other NFL franchises is to keep fishing and pray that something besides a dolphin bites.

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