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99 Days Of 99 Jersey Numbers: #66

Posted Jul 3, 2014

Similar to #67, this jersey also set a standard right from the start that has yet to come close to being matched. It was first worn by all-time Dolphin great Larry Little.

As we tick the days off to the season opener against the Patriots on Sept. 7, each day we highlight the players who wore that particular jersey number during their tenure in Miami. In some cases, the player and jersey number are synonymous. In other cases, the jersey number represents sustained greatness at a particular position. Whatever the case may be, jersey numbers are an important part of the fabric of professional football.

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Similar to #67, this jersey also set a standard right from the start that has yet to come close to being matched. It was first worn by all-time Dolphin great Larry Little (1969-80), who was acquired by the team from the San Diego Chargers in exchange for his high school teammate, cornerback Mack Lamb. Once Little came to Miami and claimed the right guard spot for good his second year with the team, he didn’t give it up for the next ten seasons, until a knee injury he suffered late in 1979 limited him to just five games in 1980 and forced him to retire after that. One of the most intimidating linemen of his era, Little was a key ingredient in the powerful running game that led to two Super Bowl titles in 1972 and 1973. He started 152 of the 158 games he played as a Dolphin and was named to four Pro Bowls. He was named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1993, the Dolphins Honor Roll later that year, and the team’s Walk of Fame in 2011. Like Bob Kuechenberg before him, Little left big shoes to fill. Of the players who followed him wearing # 66, only two were multi-year starters   –  Jamie Nails (2002-03), who started at left guard his two seasons in Miami, and Rex Hadnot  (2004-07), who was a starter at guard and center during his four years with the team.

The complete list of Dolphins who have worn #66 includes Little (1969-80); Larry Lee (1986); *Jim Gilmore (1987); Everett McIver (1996-97); Kevin Gogan (1999); Heath Irwin (2000-01); Nails (2002-03); Hadnot (2004-07); Donald Thomas (2008-09) and David Arkin (2013).
Kuechenberg (1970-84); Chris Ward (1986); Chris Conlin (1987); *Guy Goar (1987); Pat Swoopes (1991); Jeff Novak (1994); Barry Stokes (1998) and Joe Berger (2009-10).
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Tomorrow: While #65 was mainly worn by offensive linemen, a defensive lineman who wore the jersey made a key special teams play to help turn around the 1972 AFC Championship Game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Can you name the player and what he did to help ice the Dolphins’ win that game and advance them to the Super Bowl?

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PREVIOUS JERSEY NUMBERS: 99 | 98 | 97 | 96 | 95 | 94 | 93 | 92 | 91 | 92 | 90 | 89 | 88 | 87 | 86 | 85 | 84 | 83 | 82 | 81 | 80 | 79 | 78 | 77 | 76 | 75 | 74 | 73 | 72 | 71 | 70 | 69 | 68 | 67
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