Number 41 and the Three Dolphins Who Wore It Best

Alain Poupart

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 41.

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

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 41 for at least one regular season game:

Willie Pearson (1969), CB Jeris White (1974-76), CB Norris Thomas (1977-79), KR Fulton Walker (1981-85), RB Mark Konecny (1987), DB Afrian Grant (1990), FB Keith Byars (1993-96), S Scott McGarrahan (2001), CB Joey Thomas (2008), DB Evan Oglesby (2009-10), FB Jorvorskie Lane (2012), CB Chris Owens (2013), CB R.J. Stanford (2014), CB Byron Maxwell (2016-17); DB Montre Hartage (2019)

The debate:

Jeris White was a second-round pick in 1974, but he didn't become a full-time starter until 1976 when he had two interceptions and he was traded to Tampa Bay the following offseason. Like White, Norris Thomas' stay in Miami ended with a trade to Tampa Bay, but Thomas had more success with the Dolphins has he played in 46 games with 42 starts and had seven interceptions. He had three picks and three fumble recoveries in 1977. Fulton Walker is well known to Dolphins fans for his kickoff return for a touchdown against Washington in the 1982 season. He spent four-plus seasons as the team's primary kickoff returner and led the NFL with a 26.7 average in 1983. Fullback Keith Byars arrived as a free agent in 1993 and made the Pro Bowl in his first season with the team in a season highlighted by his 77-yard touchdown run in the snow at Dallas on Thanksgiving Day. In three-plus seasons with Miami, he was a key part of the passing game, with 166 receptions out of the backfield. R.J. Stanford played 34 games as a backup cornerback for the Dolphins in two-plus seasons.

Worth noting:

Pearson played five games as a rookie fifth-round pick in 1969, but that was the extent of his pro career. ... Konecny played the strike-replacement games with the Dolphins in 1987, then played 16 games with the Philadelphia Eagles the following season. ... Oglesby's resume lists two seasons with the Dolphins, but it was one game in 2009 and one game in 2010. ... Lane started five games and scored two touchdowns for the Dolphins in 2012, but was out of football in 2013 before resurfacing with Tampa Bay in 2014. ... Byron Maxwell played a big role in the Dolphins' playoff run of 2016 after arriving in a trade with Philadelphia as he started 13 games and had two interceptions and four forced fumbles.

The top three:

1. FB Keith Byars

2. CB Norris Thomas

3. KOR Fulton Walker

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Comments (2)
No. 1-2
Alain Poupart
Alain Poupart


Walker did have two fumbles on kickoff returns in a playoff game (against Seattle in 1983), but Shula didn't cut him the next day because Walker played for the Dolphins in 1984.


Fulton Walker fumbled a kickoff in a playoff game that the other team took in for a score.
Shula cut him the next day. GOAT