Miami Dolphins should not retire Thomas or Williams numbers

Zach Thomas (Photo by Stephen Dunn /Getty Images)
Zach Thomas (Photo by Stephen Dunn /Getty Images) /

On Sunday we talked about the Miami Dolphins needing to retire the number 99 in honor of Jason Taylor but what about two other big names?

Jason Taylor is in the HOF and Zach Thomas deserves to be in the Hall of Fame but they are not the same player. Not the same type of player. There is no question about Thomas belonging in the Hall of Fame but should his number be retired? No.

In some ways, Zach Thomas is more a favorite of mine than Taylor. He is the underdog and who doesn’t love great underdog stories? Thomas never should have been a success in the NFL. Undersized, a 5th-round draft pick. A bowling ball player who was an old-school style that was more of a battering ram. A tackling machine.

Thomas also is not a first-ballot HOF member and in fact, until his name is called, is not a member of the HOF. His statistics are great, worthy of the Ring of Honor that his name is on but 54 shouldn’t be retired. His career was great but it wasn’t a career that someone else likely won’t surpass.

Miami should give out 54 only to players that completely deserve it. Players that establish themselves as potentially great players or to honor him more, the starting MLB should always wear 54 to honor the contributions made to the team.

Then we have Ricky Williams. Many fans are pushing for 34 to be retired. Many fans believe he is HOF material. He is not. Not even close. The same fans see Williams’ absence on the Walk of Fame in Joe Robbie Plaza as a slight. His absence from the Ring of Honor, now called the Honor Roll, was a failure by the team. It is not.

Williams is the best pure running back the Dolphins have ever had on their roster but you know where this is going. You have read this before, here and in many other places. Ricky Williams quit on his team. More than once if we are being honest with ourselves. You don’t honor that by enshrining a player into your historical records to display to everyone.

Miami Dolphins
Ricky Williams Miami Dolphins (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

For all the good that Williams did in Miami, you can’t summarily wave off the bad. The suspensions, the abrupt retirement, the back and forth and not knowing if Williams was going to play from one season to the next.

Pre Camp AFC 2022 predictions. dark. Next

I realize that we can sit here and say “it was just pot” but it doesn’t matter. It was against the rules. It was part of the NFL’s banned substances right or wrong and other players complied who took part in its use. Williams put Williams over his team. He put his own wants above his teammates. Honestly, given who he is as a man, he absolutely should have done just that but it can’t be rewarded. Not to the extent of his name on the Honor Roll and definitely not in the form of a retired jersey.