Number 39 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 39.
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
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 39 for at least one regular season game:
RB Larry Csonka (1968-74, 1979)
The debate: Not very complicated here considering Larry Csonka was the first player to wear number 39 for the Dolphins and the last. After Csonka became team MVP in 1979 upon his return following time in the World Football League and with the New York Giants, the Dolphins didn't give out his jersey number until the organization decided to retire it in 2002. The ceremony took place at Pro Player Stadium at halftime of a Monday night game against the Chicago Bears where Ricky Williams rushed for 216 yards and become the third player in NFL history with a second consecutive 200-yard rushing game. Williams followed O.J. Simpson and Earl Campbell and they were joined in 2016 by another Dolphins player, Jay Ajayi. Csonka was the first of three running backs to have two 100-yard rushing performances in the Super Bowl before he was joined by Emmitt Smith and Terrell Davis. Csonka was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1987.
39 is one of the two numbers worn by only one Dolphins player in a regular season. The other is 12, who only belonged to Bob Griese.
The top three:
1. RB Larry Csonka
2. RB Larry Csonka
3. RB Larry Csonka