Number 37 and the Three Dolphins Who Wore It Best
The countdown to the start of the 2020 regular season has begun now that we're under 100 days away, so we'll honor every day the best players to wear the correspondent number for the Dolphins.
Today, we're at number 37.
The top players at each number so far have been:
99. DE/LB Jason Taylor; 98. DL Jared Odrick; 97. DT Jordan Phillips; 96. DT Paul Soliai; 95. DT Tim Bowens; 94. DT Randy Starks; 93. DE Trace Armstrong; 92. LS John Denney; 91. DE/LB Cameron Wake; 90. DE/LB Marco Coleman
89. WR Nat Moore; 88. TE Keith Jackson; 87. TE Andre Tillman; 86. WR Oronde Gadsden; 85. LB Nick Buoniconti; 84. DE Bill Stanfill; 83. WR Mark Clayton; 82. WR Brian Hartline; 81. WR O.J. McDuffie; 80. WR Irving Fryar
79. T Jon Giesler; 78. T Richmond Webb; 77. DE/LB A.J. Duhe; 76. T Branden Albert; 75. DT Manny Fernandez; 74. T Mark Dennis; 73. DT Bob Baumhower; 72. DT Bob Heinz; 71. T Todd Wade; 70. DE Kendall Langford
69. G Keith Sims; 68. T Eric Laakso; 67. G/T Bob Kuechenberg; 66. G Larry Little; 65. OL Jeff Dellenbach; 64. G Ed Newman; 63. G/T Mark Dixon; 62. C Jim Langer; 61. C Tim Ruddy; 60. G Bert Weidner
59. LB Doug Swift; 58. DE-LB Kim Bokamper; 57. C Dwight Stephenson; 56. LB John Offerdahl; 55. LB Earnest Rhone; 54. LB Zach Thomas; 53. LB Bob Matheson; 52. LB Channing Crowder; 51. LB Bryan Cox; 50. LB Larry Gordon
49. CB William Judson; 48. CB Gerald Small; 47. S Glenn Blackwood; 46. S Don Bessillieu; 45. CB Curtis Johnson; 44. CB Paul Lankford; 43. S Bud Brown; 42. WR Paul Warfield; 41. FB Keith Byars; 40. S Dick Anderson
39. RB Larry Csonka; 38. Calvin Jackson
As a reminder about the ground rules, the top three will be determined only by what the players did while wearing that uniform for the Dolphins.
Players who wore 37 for at least one regular season game:
S Mike Kozlowski (1979), RB Andra Franklin (1981-84), CB J.B. Brown (1989-96), Zebbie Lethridge (2001), S Yeremiah Bell (2004-11), S Kelsie McCray (2013), D.J. Campbell (2013), CB Sammy Seamster (2014), S A.J. Hendy (2016), RB Myles Gaskin (2019)
The Dolphins haven't had that many players wear 37, but three of them clearly stand out above the rest and a case could be made for each of those three as the best to wear that number. Andra Franklin was a very productive running back for the Dolphins after arriving as a second-round pick in 1981, though his career was cut short by an injury. He rushed for between 701 and 746 yards in his first three NFL seasons, though it's important to note that his 701 yards in 1982 came in only nine games because of the strike-shortened season. That pace equals to 1,246 season over 16 games. Franklin also consistenty found the end zone, with seven, seven, and eight rushing touchdowns his first three season. Franklin started the first two games in 1984, but was injured and never played again in the NFL. J.B. Brown was a 12th-round pick in 1989 who became a starter in his second season and stayed in the starting lineup for six seasons. While he didn't get enough credit, he formed a solid cornerback tandem with Troy Vincent from 1992-95. Brown had four picks in 1992 and five more in 1993. He started one game in 1996 in his final season with Miami before closing out his NFL career with four seasons split between the Steelers, Cardinals and Lions. Safety Yeremiah Bell arrived in Miami as a sixth-round pick out of Eastern Kentucky and wound up starting 75 games for the Dolphins, including all but one game his final four seasons with the team. He had at least 100 tackles in each of those seasons and made the Pro Bowl in 2009 when he had 114 tackles and three interceptions.
Kozlowski made our top three for number 40, but his career began with him wearing 37. He played all 16 games with one start in 1979 before spending the 1980 season on IR. ... Lethridge, who had been a quarterback at Texas Tech, played two games with the Dolphins in 2001 for the only NFL regular season action of his career. ... After playing four games for the Dolphins in 2013, McCray went on to play 11 games with Tampa Bay that season before playing all 16 games the next three years (one with Kansas City and two with Seattle). ... Gaskin is back for a second season with Miami after rushing for 133 yards in seven games in 2019, though his season ended in Week 16 when he sustained a leg injury shortly after scoring his first NFL touchdown.
The top three:
1. CB J.B. Brown
2. S Yeremiah Bell
3. RB Andra Franklin