Top 15 Dolphins Drafts of All-Time

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Here's my attempt at a top 15 with an emphasis on HOF picks leading the way.

1. 1983
The 1983 draft class brought Hall of Famer Dan Marino (1st), Mark Clayton (8th) and Reggie Roby (6th). Other contributors included Mike Charles (2), Charles Benson (3) and Mark Brown (9th).

2. 1968
The 1968 draft was highlighted by HOF Larry Csonka (1), Dick Anderson (3), Jim Kiick (5) and Doug Crusan (2). I think Anderson should be in the HOF.

3. 1997
Miami missed on Yatil Green in the first, but drafted Sam Madison in the 2nd and Hall of Famer Jason Taylor in the third.

4. 1980
Miami selected CB Don McNeal in the first and Hall of Famer Dwight Stephenson in R2. Joe Rose was a 7th and David Woodley was drafted in the 8th round.

5. 1967
HOF Bob Griese (1), Larry Seiple (7)

6. 1990
Seven time Pro Bowler Richmond Webb was followed by Keith Sims in R2. Scott Mitchell was a 4th rounder.

7. 1977
A.J. Duhe and Bob Baumhower back-to-back 1-2. Leroy Harris was a 5th rounder.

8. 1992
Troy Vincent and Marco Coleman were both first rounders. Larry Webster was a third rounder and Dwight Hollier a fourth.

9. 1979
Jon Geisler (1), Jeff Toews (2), Tony Nathan (3), Uwve Van Schamann (7), Glenn Blackwood (8), Mike Kozlowski (10)

10. 1982
Roy Foster in the 1st and Mark Duper in the 2nd, Paul Lankford (3), Charles Bowser (4), Dan Johnson (7)

11. 2016
Laremy Tunsil (1), Xavien Howard (2), Kenyan Drake (3), Jakeem Grant (6)

12. 1969
Bill Stanfill (1), Bob Heinz (2), Mercury Morris (3), Lloyd Mumphord (16)

13. 2015
DaVante Parker (1), Jordan Phillips (2), Bobby McCain (5), Jay Ajayi (5)

14. 1976
Larry Gordon (1), Kim Bokamper (1), Duriel Harris (3)

15. 1981
David Overstreet (1), Andra Franklin (2), Tommy Vigorito (5), Fulton Walker (6), William Judson (8), Jim Jensen (11)

Others:

1994 -- Tim Bowens (1), Tim Ruddy (2), Brant Boyer (6)
2011 -- Mike Pouncey (1), Charles Clay (5)
2012 -- Ryan Tannehill (1), Olivier Vernon (3), Lamar Miller (4)
1996 -- Daryl Gardener (1), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (3), Zach Thomas (5)
1978 --- Jimmy Cefalo (3), Gerald Small (4), Doug Betters (6), Bruce Hardy (9)
1970 -- Jim Mandich (2), Tim Foley (3), Curtis Johnson (4), Jake Scott (7), MIke Kolen (12)
 

Dolphinator530

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97 could have pushed even higher if Green didnt have all of the injury issues. Dude could ball would have been a heck of a first 3 rounds if that was the case.
 

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WOW a Leroy Harris reference... man that takes me back.
Don't forget in 1996 JJ took Shawn Wooden who was really coming on to look like a superstar safety then he blew out his knee.
 

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WOW a Leroy Harris reference... man that takes me back.
Don't forget in 1996 JJ took Shawn Wooden who was really coming on to look like a superstar safety then he blew out his knee.
Jimmy Johnson had a couple of really nice drafts. Surtain, Thomas, Madison and Taylor over a couple of years.
 

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In the Surtain draft was also Kenny Mixon, and I think Lorenzo Brommell.
And, I think, Larry Shannon and John Avery.
 

Danny

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Looking back at those you see some pretty bad drafts actually

I'd say the 68 draft was better than the 83 draft.
 

SMadison29

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1996 -- Daryl Gardener (1), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (3), Zach Thomas (5)

Should be #6 or 7. Zach is trending to be elected to the HOF within the next two years.
 

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Looking back at those you see some pretty bad drafts actually

I'd say the 68 draft was better than the 83 draft.
What stood out to me were some real quality drafts in the late 1970's and early 1980's, setting the stage for a couple of super bowl appearances.

Those mid-80's drafts really hurt the team's chances to get a super bowl for Dan Marino.
 

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1996 -- Daryl Gardener (1), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (3), Zach Thomas (5)

Should be #6 or 7. Zach is trending to be elected to the HOF within the next two years.
In retrospect, I might have that 1969 draft a little low as well. Zach belongs in the HOF.
 

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In the Surtain draft was also Kenny Mixon, and I think Lorenzo Brommell.
And, I think, Larry Shannon and John Avery.
That draft would have been an absolute homerun if Miami took Randy Moss. Dan Marino to Randy Moss for a couple of seasons would have been fun.
 

Awsi Dooger

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In retrospect, I might have that 1969 draft a little low as well.
I really appreciate threads like this, especially when they are obviously self-researched and self-thought, instead of a paste job.

My disagreements would be 1969 too low and 1970 at the opposite end of where it should be. I kept scrolling for that one. That draft stitched everything together toward the glory years that followed. It contained 4 defensive starters from the Super Bowl years including 3/4 of the secondary in Tim Foley, Curtis Johnson and Jake Scott. Phenomenal draft. Mike Kolen in a later round was the hard hitting "Captain Crunch" of the linebacker crew. Obviously Jim Mandich was the changeup smaller receiving threat tight end to go along with the veteran superb blocker we already had in Marv Fleming.

I realize this has become a long way away. There are fewer posts and memories regarding those early '70s teams than when I joined in 2005. In particular the supporting names are absurdly devalued. Bill Stanfill from the 1969 draft may not have been a Hall of Famer but he was every bit that caliber for a few seasons in our heyday. He remains light years the most underrated Dolphins player of all time, in terms of how he is remembered and viewed on fan sites compared to his stature and significance at the time. That name should jump off the page as soon as it is seen.

Those teams were incredibly smart and versatile. That's why guys like Foley and Johnson inspire such smiles. They were not only incredibly resourceful in the secondary given the liberal rules of that era, but they were also the kick blocking guys. Miami really emphasized it in that era. Foley blocked several punts and returned two for touchdowns. Mumphord and Johnson were the two side by side flank guys on field goals. Johnson would attempt to crash from the inside and if they overplayed him Mumphord used his great quickness to dash around the perimeter. When an opponent attempted a field goal in those days the first thing we looked for was which side Johnson and Mumphord would line up on. Then it was great fun to see them jitter around and try to make the flank blocker guess on which one to emphasize.

I could keep going. Best way to summarize is we already had the megastars like Griese and Csonka. Dick Anderson was just a notch below that. Shula quickly brought in Warfield. Those 1969 and 1970 drafts supplied the sharp necessary building block pieces that allowed the Dolphins to contend immediately. There was no waiting around 7 years in those days. Just imagine 1970 through 1977. My gosh, a billion things happened from a Dolphins perspective in that span of time. Up and down and all around. That's why the recent 7 year stretch was so intolerable.
 

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I really appreciate threads like this, especially when they are obviously self-researched and self-thought, instead of a paste job.

My disagreements would be 1969 too low and 1970 at the opposite end of where it should be. I kept scrolling for that one. That draft stitched everything together toward the glory years that followed. It contained 4 defensive starters from the Super Bowl years including 3/4 of the secondary in Tim Foley, Curtis Johnson and Jake Scott. Phenomenal draft. Mike Kolen in a later round was the hard hitting "Captain Crunch" of the linebacker crew. Obviously Jim Mandich was the changeup smaller receiving threat tight end to go along with the veteran superb blocker we already had in Marv Fleming.

I realize this has become a long way away. There are fewer posts and memories regarding those early '70s teams than when I joined in 2005. In particular the supporting names are absurdly devalued. Bill Stanfill from the 1969 draft may not have been a Hall of Famer but he was every bit that caliber for a few seasons in our heyday. He remains light years the most underrated Dolphins player of all time, in terms of how he is remembered and viewed on fan sites compared to his stature and significance at the time. That name should jump off the page as soon as it is seen.

Those teams were incredibly smart and versatile. That's why guys like Foley and Johnson inspire such smiles. They were not only incredibly resourceful in the secondary given the liberal rules of that era, but they were also the kick blocking guys. Miami really emphasized it in that era. Foley blocked several punts and returned two for touchdowns. Mumphord and Johnson were the two side by side flank guys on field goals. Johnson would attempt to crash from the inside and if they overplayed him Mumphord used his great quickness to dash around the perimeter. When an opponent attempted a field goal in those days the first thing we looked for was which side Johnson and Mumphord would line up on. Then it was great fun to see them jitter around and try to make the flank blocker guess on which one to emphasize.

I could keep going. Best way to summarize is we already had the megastars like Griese and Csonka. Dick Anderson was just a notch below that. Shula quickly brought in Warfield. Those 1969 and 1970 drafts supplied the sharp necessary building block pieces that allowed the Dolphins to contend immediately. There was no waiting around 7 years in those days. Just imagine 1970 through 1977. My gosh, a billion things happened from a Dolphins perspective in that span of time. Up and down and all around. That's why the recent 7 year stretch was so intolerable.
So glad you chimed in Awsi Dooger. Yes, Stanfill was seriously underrated. I think he had 18 sacks one year when sacks weren't actually recognized. Not quite Jason Taylor, but that type of player for a few years anyway.

You can see those late 70's, early 80's drafts really putting nice pieces together as well. Really expected those teams to enjoy more success, at least in terms of super bowl appearances etc. Some tough things happened along the way with the sudden deaths of Larry Gordon and David Overstreet, then seriously bad drafts in the mid-1980's. Those Billy Milner, John Bosa, Eric Kumerow years.

My memory of those heydays is beginning to fade a little as well. Thanks for always helping the fill in the blanks.
 

Danny

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I really appreciate threads like this, especially when they are obviously self-researched and self-thought, instead of a paste job.

My disagreements would be 1969 too low and 1970 at the opposite end of where it should be. I kept scrolling for that one. That draft stitched everything together toward the glory years that followed. It contained 4 defensive starters from the Super Bowl years including 3/4 of the secondary in Tim Foley, Curtis Johnson and Jake Scott. Phenomenal draft. Mike Kolen in a later round was the hard hitting "Captain Crunch" of the linebacker crew. Obviously Jim Mandich was the changeup smaller receiving threat tight end to go along with the veteran superb blocker we already had in Marv Fleming.

I realize this has become a long way away. There are fewer posts and memories regarding those early '70s teams than when I joined in 2005. In particular the supporting names are absurdly devalued. Bill Stanfill from the 1969 draft may not have been a Hall of Famer but he was every bit that caliber for a few seasons in our heyday. He remains light years the most underrated Dolphins player of all time, in terms of how he is remembered and viewed on fan sites compared to his stature and significance at the time. That name should jump off the page as soon as it is seen.

Those teams were incredibly smart and versatile. That's why guys like Foley and Johnson inspire such smiles. They were not only incredibly resourceful in the secondary given the liberal rules of that era, but they were also the kick blocking guys. Miami really emphasized it in that era. Foley blocked several punts and returned two for touchdowns. Mumphord and Johnson were the two side by side flank guys on field goals. Johnson would attempt to crash from the inside and if they overplayed him Mumphord used his great quickness to dash around the perimeter. When an opponent attempted a field goal in those days the first thing we looked for was which side Johnson and Mumphord would line up on. Then it was great fun to see them jitter around and try to make the flank blocker guess on which one to emphasize.

I could keep going. Best way to summarize is we already had the megastars like Griese and Csonka. Dick Anderson was just a notch below that. Shula quickly brought in Warfield. Those 1969 and 1970 drafts supplied the sharp necessary building block pieces that allowed the Dolphins to contend immediately. There was no waiting around 7 years in those days. Just imagine 1970 through 1977. My gosh, a billion things happened from a Dolphins perspective in that span of time. Up and down and all around. That's why the recent 7 year stretch was so intolerable.
I think Stanfill was very underrated and so was Ven Den Herder. Great memories.
 

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I

I know...it would have softened the loss of losing Yatil Green. Maybe if Larry Shannon had worked out AT ALL...
If JJ made one mistake, it was not recognizing that Miami could win with a passing game. I understand wanting to balance the run and certainly building that defense made sense. He did a nice job on the defensive side. But, if he had given Dan a few more weapons in the passing game who knows? Look what Moss meant to Culpepper and later on in 2007 to Brady.
 
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