Don Shula, the winningest coach in NFL history has sadly passed away at the age of 90. The former Dolphins patriach leaves behind his wife, Mary Anne, and five children; Dave, Donna, Sharon, Anne, and Mike.
Shula began his NFL career as a defensive back for the Cleveland Browns in 1951. He would go on to play 73 career games for the Browns, Colts, and Redskins and take 21 interceptions.
He became Detroit Lions’ defensive coordinator in 1960 before making the move to Head Coach with the Baltimore Colts in 1963. Posting a record of 71 wins, 23 losses, and 4 ties, Shula took the Colts to Super Bowl 3 in 1968, where they famously lost to Joe Namath’s New York Jets.
Just 2 years later Shula acrimoniously moved to the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins were charged with tampering, and forced to give up their first-round draft pick.
Don Shula first-round pick
Shula was arguably the best first-round pick the Dolphins ever made. In just his third season in Miami, Shula led the Dolphins to what remains the NFL’s only perfect season.
Finishing the1972 season, 14-0, the Dolphins would go on to win Super Bowl 7 over the Washington Redskins by a score of 14-7. The Dolphins would repeat the following season, beating the Minnesota Vikings 24-7.
Don Shula would appear in only one more Super Bowl, with his new QB Dan Marino in 1985. Losing to the San Francisco 49ers in Stanford.
Coach Shula would finish his career with 328 wins, 156 losses, and 6 ties. He was a two-teim Super Bowl coach and four-time NFL Coach of the Year.
He was often still seen at Dolphins games and around the training ground.
He will be sorely missed.
RIP Don Shula. The perfect coach.