updated: March 18, 2014
    I am not a real big fan of picking favorites when it comes to Miami Dolphin players.  There are so many great players that have contributed to the Dolphins' successful history, each in a unique way.  However, if I were forced to select five favorites that have played since I began following the team, these five guys would rank at or near the top of my list:

Tony Nathan  Alabama  RB  1979-1987  #22
***Tony could do it all.  He could run, catch, and block.  He quietly did his work well and never received the attention he deserved.  Tony took the ball the final 25 yards of the amazing hook-and-lateral play versus San Diego in the '81 playoff thriller. Every year in the South Dakota football championships in the Dakota Dome, the an announcer will refer to the Dolphins' hook-and-lateral play in at least one of the games.
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Ricky Williams  Texas  RB  2002-2005, 2007-2010  #34
***Ricky could do it all.  Ricky was an extremely gifted athlete, yet he managed to carry himself in a quiet, humble way.  I have a lot in common with Ricky.  I, too, deal with a form of anxiety disorder, so I can relate to Ricky very well.  He signed with the Dolphins on March 8, 2002, and became the Dolphins' first great rushing threat since Larry Csonka.  He rushed for a team record 1,853 yards in his first year with the Fins.  Ricky truly was a special Dolphin, and I loved watching him take it to the house...just like he's doing in the picture to the left.  Run, Ricky, Run!

Mark Duper  Northwestern St. (La.)  WR 1982-1992 #85 
***Super Duper was old school.  He wore no gloves and the facemask he used was popular in the early 1970's.   Dupe was a game-breaker who was capable of going deep on any play.  Duper's one-handed touchdown catch in the Orange Bowl in 1985 to help beat the Jets was a super duper moment in Dolphin history.

Dan Marino  Pittsburgh  QB  1983-1999  #13
***Number 13 is my lucky number...and it was for the Dolphins, too.  Nobody gave the Dolphins more years of service (17 seasons).  With Danny Boy at quarterback the Dolphins always had a chance to win no matter what the deficit was.  The 1994 "Clock Play" in New York against the Jets still gives me chills.  Dan Marino=Hall of Fame!

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Greg Baty  Stanford  TE  1990-1994  #84
***Of the nine Gregs to ever play with the Dolphins, this Greg was the most special.  I wrote to him in November of 1992.  A month later I met him at a closed Dolphin practice in Miami.  He gave me his wristbands as he walked off the field after a 20-7 Monday night victory over the Raiders.
Other players and my favorite memory of each are listed below:

abrucehardy.jpg (29624 bytes) This is Bruce Hardy, one of my all-time favorite tight ends!

Bruce Hardy  Arizona St.  TE  1978-1989  #84
**Bruce played my favorite position and wore my favorite number.  He possessed great hands and played during the Griese-Strock-Woodley-Marino days.  Hardy ranks 17th on the all-time scoring list with 25 touchdowns.

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Tommy Vigorito  Virginia  RB  1981-1985  #32
**Tommy was a nifty punt-returner who could lose tacklers and take it the distance from anywhere on the field.  My favorite Vigorito moment came on a Thursday night when he returned a punt 87 yards for a touchdown against the Steelers  He was also a sparkplug in the backfield when needed.  A knee injury basically ended his career. He said in a recent interview: "I really wished I didnít get hurt because I feel like I could have done a lot more in my career. I try not to dwell on it though. It is just part of life and you deal with it.Ē  That's what we all need to do: deal with it!

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Garo Yepremian College: none  K  1970-1978  #1
**Born in Lamaca, Cyprus, Garo was one of the first soccer-style kickers in the NFL.  Many coaches thought soccer-style kicking would be a passing fad.  However, Garo landed a job with the Dolphins and ended up making a kick that I believe turned the history of the Miami Dolphins from a wanna-be team to an elite franchise.  His 37-yard field goal in Kansas City ended the longest game in NFL history giving the Dolphins a 27-24 win over Kansas City in two overtimes.  I still laugh and shake my head whenever I see his "pass" in Super Bowl VII.

Jim Jensen  Boston University  QB/WR/RB 1981-1992 #11
**Jim was given the nickname "Crash." He could play any position and did it with a competitiveness matched by few.  He was drafted as a quarterback, but Coach Shula found Jim's talents to go beyond a single position.  Jim Jensen gave the Dolphins 11 years of strong, relentless service.  A favorite play of mine came in 1984 when, on a lateral pass from Marino in the Orange Bowl, Jensen threw a touchdown pass to Mark Clayton in a 28-7 victory over the New England Patriots.  When it came to making first downs, Jim Jensen was a sure-bet option.

David Woodley LSU  QB 1980-1983  #16
**David served as the link between the eras of Griese and Marino.  As an eighth round draft pick, he exceeded expectations by leading the young Dolphins to one Super Bowl appearance.  Though he didn't win a title that year, I will remember him as one of my favorites.  As a 10-year old kid in fourth grade, David Woodley was my favorite quarterback on my favorite team.  I loved watching him throw the deep ball to Duriel Harris, while his ability to run was always a threat.  When I was a sixth grader, David provided me with some great, great memories by winning three straight playoff games en route to the Super Bowl.  Finally, David Woodley is special to me for another reason; he was kind of like me in a way.  No better can I explain this than through David's own words shortly before his first and only Super Bowl appearance.  When asked by a reporter to state his feelings about playing in front of 100,000 people in Pasadena, David stated that it would be better if those 100,000 seats were completely empty.  He didn't need the fame, the attention, or the glory.  To sum up his life, perhaps Dave Hyde (Florida Sun-Sentinel) put it best when he wrote: "But David Woodley was a name Dolphin who never wanted to be a superhero. He played the most public of positions in the most private of ways, right to the end, when the obituaries couldn't even tell when, where or why he died."  David died from liver failure at the age of 44 on May 6, 2003.  David Woodlely, I thank you.
Check out these two sites for more on the story of David Woodley:
  http://www.profootballweekly.com/PFW/NFL/AFC/AFC+East/Miami/Features/2003/bikoff050703.htm 
     and     http://www.sun-sentinel.com/sports/football/pro/dolphins/sfl-woodley0112507,0,187684.story 
Glenn & Lyle Blackwood--they smacked ya! Glenn Blackwood Texas  S 1979-1987 #47
Lyle Blackwood TCU  S 1981-1986 #42

**Two of the baddest brothers since the James brothers, Glenn and Lyle brought the hard hits in the Dolphin secondary for many seasons.  What they didn't have in speed, they made up for in intensity, desire, and smarts.  They were a key part of the Killer B's and helped lead the Dolphins to Super Bowl appearances in 1982 and 1984.  When I think of the Dolphins of the early 1980s, these two cross my mind.

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