The Miami Dolphins debuted in 1966 as an AFL expansion team, but it wasn’t long before the struggling team found its track, ending the 1970 season at 10-4 before falling to the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl VI during just their sixth season of existence.
In their seventh and eighth seasons of existence, the Dolphins won back to back Super Bowl Titles, and in doing so, became the first team to compete in three straight Super Bowls. The 1972 campaign is one of the most memorable in NFL history, being the first team to finish off a perfect season in the Super Bowl era with a 14-0 regular season record, combined with a 3-0 record in the playoffs.
While the team wouldn’t reach another Super Bowl until 1982 when they fell to the Washington Redskins, their winning ways continued throughout the 1970s, finishing below .500 just once.
The 1980s were no different, especially with the addition of quarterback Dan Marino from the University of Pittsburgh. Marino led the team to a loss in Super Bowl XIX to the San Francisco 49ers and made it to the AFC Championship game in 1985, where they lost to the league’s Cinderella team, the New England Patriots.
After four lean seasons, the Dolphins picked up steam again in the 1990s and early 2000s, making the playoffs nine times in twelve seasons. However, they failed to advance past the AFC Divisional Round.
One of the NFL’s winningest franchises from the AFL-NFL merger in 1970 to 2001, many felt the Dolphins would continue their winning ways, but it wasn’t to be.
From 2002 to 2018, the Dolphins made the playoffs just twice, both losses. They had only one AFC East Championship, which came in 2008, one year after they suffered their worst record in franchise history at 1-15.
Compare this to 1970-2001, when the Dolphins won 12 AFC East Championships and made the playoffs 21 times in 32 seasons.
They have finished at or below .500 in 12 seasons since 2002, and have lacked a franchise quarterback since the dominating days of Dan Marino.
Miami Dolphins Quick Hits
Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens, Florida
Aqua, orange, white
Bob Griese, Paul Warfield, Larry Little, Dan Marino, Jason Taylor
Only team in Super Bowl era to have a perfect season.
Main Article: Miami Dolphins Helmet History
Main Article: History of the Miami Dolphins Jersey