Miami Dolphins At 50: 2000-2005
By Brian Miller
Rick Spielman is promoted to GM from Senior Vice President football operations and player personnel. Dan Marino is names Senior Vice President of Football Operations
Dan Marino resigns as the teams SVP of FO. He cites the time involved and away from his family as his reasons.
With only days until the start of training camp, Ricky Williams tells the Miami Herald he wants to retire. He calls Dave Wannstedt and tells him the same.
Ricky Williams loses his appeal for his 2nd failed drug test and it’s made public that he has failed a third test. Williams faces a four game suspension. Williams retires and sits out one year
Ricky Williams is placed on the reserve/did not report list
Following a pre-game injury to Olindo Mare, Wes Welker steps in as the teams kicker and connects on a 29 yard field goal and one PAT. Welker would kick-off, return punts, return kicks, and kick field-goals. He is the first person in NFL history to do all five in one game. He earned ST player of the week awards despite the teams loss.
Dave Wannstedt announces he is resigning as the Dolphins head coach during the teams bye week. Defensive coordinator Jim Bates becomes the teams interim head coach.
Jim Bates loses his first game as head coach and the Dolphins drop to 1-9. They finish the season 4-12 the lowest win total since 1969
After a long courtship Wayne Huizenga convinces LSU coach Nick Saban to become the Dolphins fourth full time head coach (not including Bates). Saban announces that he will accept the position at an event in Orlando surrounding this teams bowl game against Iowa
Nick Saban signs a five year contract to be Miami’s head coach. All of the contract is fully guaranteed
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Dec 6, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban during the 2014 SEC Championship Game against the Missouri Tigers at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports.
In what will seem like an annual event, the Dolphins change the name of Pro-Player Stadium to Dolphins Stadium. Nick Saban begins dismantling the coaching staff and adding his own staff to the team.
Scott Linehan is named the teams new offensive coordinator
Jason Garrett is named the quarterbacks coach. Garrett spent the last six games of his 12 year playing career as a Miami Dolphin and is the current head coach of the Dallas Cowboys
Dan Marino is elected to the Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility
Ricky Williams is reinstated by the league. He is told by the NFL that he will need to serve a four game suspension for previous failed drug tests. It’s rumored that Nick Saban had a huge influence on Williams returning to the NFL and the Dolphins. As part of his reinstatement Williams is subject to as many as 10 random drug tests per month for the remainder of his career.
Rick Spielman announces that he is leaving the team
Randy Mueller is named the teams GM
Tim Bowens is released as a waived/failed physical designee. He will be able to retire a Dolphin. Bowens is the last player to have played for Don Shula.
Richmond Webb signs a one day contract allowing him to retire officially from the NFL as a Miami Dolphin
Dan Marino stood in front of thousands, including myself, on a hot summer August day in Canton, Oh. as he was enshrined in the Pro-Football Hall of Fame. Owner Wayne Huizenga flies team employees and their families from Miami to Canton to witness the ceremonies.
The Gallery Of Legends makes its debut at Dolphins Stadium
The Dolphins rally from 21 points at half-time to beat the Bills. The Dolphins score 21 points in the 4th quarter. It’s the 2nd largest comeback in team history
Zach Thomas, Chris Chambers, and Jason Taylor are named to the Pro-Bowl team
Ricky Williams rushes for 700 yards on the season while splitting time with Ronnie Brown. He does however fail his fourth drug test.