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    by Published on 12-07-2014 07:11 PM  Number of Views: 1118 
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    Miami's Postseason Hopes In Serious Doubt

    We have seen it before, December football in Miami, lackluster performances, heartbreak, disappointment, sound familiar? That time of the year has returned once again and the Miami Dolphins showed today things haven't changed much. After a quick start in the first quarter against the Baltimore Ravens the Dolphins couldn't find a way to keep the motor running. The Ravens manhandled the Dolphins in a bruising 28-13 defeat.

    Before the home game in Miami today, the Dolphins had a firm grasp on reaching the post season but the loss today has all but crippled any chance of them advancing beyond December. They now face a daunting uphill battle of winning their final four games to have any realistic chance of making the playoffs. That task begins next Sunday against one of the best teams in the NFL right now, the New England Patriots.

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    by Published on 12-02-2014 04:06 PM     Number of Views: 1444 

    State Your Case: Bob Kuechenberg

    Photo courtesy of Miami Dolphins

    Talk of Fame Network
    by Ron Borges

    A guy who spent his career opening up holes for others now needs someone to open one up for him. Truth be told, Bob Kuechenberg not only needs it, he deserves it.

    You can’t talk to anyone who played on or against the Miami Dolphins of the 1970s who won’t tell you Kuechenberg wasn’t the best offensive lineman on a team that won two Super Bowls, went to three and became the only undefeated team in the modern history of the NFL when Miami went 17-0 in 1972. Yet his old offensive linemates Larry Little and Jim Langer are both in the Hall. So is Bob Griese, the quarterback Kuechenberg protected as if he was his son; Larry Csonka, the fullback he bowled people over for; and Paul Warfield, the wide receiver who got into the Hall in part because Kuechenberg was so adept at keeping Griese upright. They’re in while Kuechenberg has remained out in the snow for 31 years.

    One explanation why he was an eight-time finalist but never made it through the door in Canton seems to be that he simply played too long. Langer and Little both retired several years before Kuechenberg, who lasted 14 seasons before hanging it up after starting 15 games in 1983 and making his final Pro Bowl at age 36. Because of that, they became Hall of Fame eligible before he did and were both inducted, meaning if Kuechenberg were added 60% of that Dolphins’ line would be enshrined.

    It is the same problem Jerry Kramer and L.C. Greenwood of the Packers’ and Steelers’ dynasties have long faced without gaining induction despite considerable support. It’s not that anyone says there’s a limit to how many enshrines are allowed from any team but it feels, at least in Kuechenberg’s case, that he kept hitting a glass ceiling, a victim, perhaps, of a numbers crunch.
    A six-time Pro Bowl performer (one more than LIttle and the same number as Langer), Kuechenberg came to the Dolphins in 1970 by a circuitous route. Drafted in 1969 by the Philadelphia Eagles, who finished 2-12 the previous season, Kuechenberg quit shortly after training camp began but came back only to be cut several weeks later. He was then signed and cut in a week by the Atlanta Falcons before agreeing to play semi-pro ball for the Chicago Owls of the Continental Football League that fall.
    Kuechenberg often has said that 1969 season “was for the birds. The Eagles, Falcons and Owls.”

    Don Shula signed him the following year and he started five games at left guard for the Dolphins that 1970 season before becoming a full-time starter the following year. The only time he would relinquish that position for the next 13 years was when he was shifted to left tackle in 1978. Kuechenberg made the Pro Bowl that season too, and despite being undersized at 6-2, 253 pounds, remained at left tackle in 1979 before moving back inside and making two more Pro Bowls (1982-83) at left guard before retiring. According to Dolphins’ game books, he was called for holding only 15 times in 196 NFL games. That may not be a record but it’s a sure sign of his dominance.

    Asked about who he would give a free pass into the Hall of Fame to if he had the power, Hall of Fame coach Don Shula told Talk of Fame Network, “That’s an easy one for me. I had a guard by the name of Bob Kuechenberg, Kooch was just a great football player. He blocked some pretty good tackles that we played against and did a good job but he’s never gotten that final recognition, which is that Hall of Fame jacket. Some day, I hope I’m around to see him accept.”

    Shula, who has more victories than any coach in NFL history, also once said “Bob Kuechenberg did more to help my team win than any player I ever coached.” Considering he coached Johnny Unitas, Dan Marino and Griese that’s saying a mouthful.
    A mouthful is often what you got playing against Kuechenberg. He was a hard-nosed, physical player whose approach to the game was best reflected by the fact to play in Super Bowl VIII he had a 10-inch metal rod inserted in his broken forearm. That day he pummeled Vikings’ Hall of Fame defensive end Alan Page with it, the cast around his arm in tatters by the time the game was over. Miami won.

    His former offensive line coach that day, Monte Clark, once said of Kuechenberg: “There’s not a tougher guy in America. You have to kill him to beat him. He played in the Super Bowl the year we went 17-0 with a cast on a broken arm. After the game, (the cast) was like pulp because he beat Alan Page in the head with it so many times. Kooch was a great short-yardage blocker. He could take a guy who was about two inches off the ground, get down, dig him out and put him on his back. He was very tenacious. Tough. Great competitor. Never made mistakes.”

    Outspoken and some might say grumpy, Kuechenberg has always spoken his mind. When his final year of eligibility as a modern day candidate ended without induction in 2009 he said, “Now you get thrown in the swamp.”
    He was referring to the HOF Senior Committee, from where his former teammate Nick Buoniconti emerged in 2001 to win enshrinement. That is now the only opening left for the 67-year-old Kuechenberg and it’s a hole someone else will have to clear out for him.
    by Published on 12-02-2014 12:43 AM  Number of Views: 1015 
    1. Categories:
    2. Front Page News,
    3. Newswire

    Dolphins Late Rally Keeps Playoff Hopes Alive

    Flashback to the Miami Dolphins 2013 season and it brings back memories of a disheartening end to a hopeful year. After two unacceptable losses to AFC east division rivals, the Buffalo Bills and New York Jets put an end to the Miami Dolphins playoff dreams. 2014 has been a different story, the Dolphins put an end to a long standing winless streak on Monday Night Football versus the New York Jets by rallying for a 16-13 victory.

    It wasn't the prettiest of wins the Dolphins have had this year but they showed resilience which they have lacked in past years against division foes. There was missed tackles, dropped catches, bad passes, poor kicking and questionable strategy but the team stayed focused in the end.

    The Dolphins have shown progress all year and late season wins over the Bills and Jets was exactly what this team needed to remedy the past failures that have haunted this team for many years. Miami now sits at 3-1 in the division and 6-3 overall in the AFC. The opportunity is there for the taking. Miami needs to continue overcoming obstacles as they have a formidable foe at home next Sunday, the Baltimore Ravens, a team that has beaten the Dolphins four times in a row to date. Change is a good thing this year and the Dolphins season depends on it.

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