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Shula says '72 Dolphins aren't "grumpy old guys"

Hall of Fame coach Don Shula, who led the Miami Dolphins to the only perfect season in NFL history, recently said that he fears that the team’s feat finally will be exceeded in 2009.

“They’re a legitimate concern,” Shula said regarding the Colts and Saints.  “I’m rooting secretly inside that somebody beats them.”

As to the Saints, Shula has gotten his wish.  As to the Colts, only five chances remain.

Now, with a 19-0 mark from the Colts looking possible, Shula is trying to change the image of the team that set the standard 37 years ago.

“We get accused of being a bunch of grumpy old guys that get together and hope and pray that the last undefeated team gets beaten and that’s not true at all,” Shula told NFL Network’s Steve Mariucci on The Coaches Show.

(Shula’s right.  It’s not true.  Based on Shula’s comments from last week, they root secretly that the last undefeated team loses.)

“If somebody does what we’ve done, I’m going to be the first guy to call that coach and congratulate him,” Shula said.  “But until they do, we’re very proud of that record. . . .  People that have records want to continue to have those records.  But, you’ve got to be a sportsman and if somebody breaks or ties that record, you’ve got to acknowledge that and congratulate them — and we’ll do that.”

Still, the annual bottle of champagne that gets popped when the last undefeated team loses creates a much different image.

And don’t even get us started on Mercury Morris, who has remained amazingly quiet only two years after sharing with anyone and everyone who’d listen to his anti-Patriot rantings.

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43 Responses to “Shula says '72 Dolphins aren't "grumpy old guys"”
  1. SteelCurtnDee says: Dec 22, 2009 4:46 PM

    Why bash them? I’d be the same way. Yeah you wanna celebrate when the last undefeated loses, and it’s become tradition now… They have every right to be proud of what they did…
    Let’s see what happens if someone else does it… my guess is that they will gracefully congratulate that team… if they come off like a bunch of a-hole crybabies then we can start ripping them.

  2. mexican_radio says: Dec 22, 2009 4:48 PM

    It’s funny that a story printed many years ago about few teamates making a toast one season has grown into this urban legend about alumni flying in from all over the country every year to gather for a large celeberation. The myth continues…

  3. virtualplague says: Dec 22, 2009 4:50 PM

    The 72 Dolphins had the second easiest schedule in the history of the NFL and they played in an era before free agency. Their accomplishment means nothing now.

  4. endzoneview says: Dec 22, 2009 4:50 PM

    I already read this last week
    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2009/12/15/don-shula-admits-concern-colts-or-saints-could-go-unbeaten/

  5. rcpecook says: Dec 22, 2009 4:50 PM

    Yeah right. I’ve SEEN them at the meetings.

  6. Desides says: Dec 22, 2009 4:51 PM

    “Still, the annual bottle of champagne that gets popped when the last undefeated team loses creates a much different image.”
    Get over it.

  7. 72 Apologist says: Dec 22, 2009 4:51 PM

    No matter how many times the 72 Dolphins players say they don’t get together to pop some champagne, you guys refuse to listen. Only two of the players get together. Thats it. Not all of them. You people that call them grumpy old men are the grumpy old men. Get over yourselves and leave them alone. The only person who leaves himself up to being ridiculed is mercury morris and that’s because he’s a gas bag. I blame that on ESPN for allowing him to spew off his unintelligible comments about a house that’s imaginary. There is no champagne outside of two players…that’s it. Respect the undefeated season. The Patriots didn’t deserve it. The Colts deserve it and the Saints would have. They are likeable.

  8. HarrisonHits says: Dec 22, 2009 4:52 PM

    PLEASE DON’T SAY THE NAME…. that one that begins with M and M. You might summon him from whatever rock he’s been residing under.
    And Schula can have a little bit of GFY, you can smell the reek of the BS pouring out of his mouth from 1000 miles away.

  9. hayward giablommi says: Dec 22, 2009 4:52 PM

    Shame that the Saints lost, there’s no way I can hope that the Colts go undefeated or even go 16-0.
    Damn shame that we have to listen to these old bittermen spout off year after year, and that we’ll have to listen to Don Shula’s “If somebody does what we’ve done, I’m going to be the first guy to call that coach and congratulate him” nonsense.
    Is this not the most self serving, disingenuous BS you’ve ever heard?

  10. Hap says: Dec 22, 2009 4:53 PM

    It’s just that Mercury Morris is a loudmouth idiot that thinks he’s the spokesperson for that 72 Dolphins team.

  11. Twiz says: Dec 22, 2009 4:54 PM

    Dayum! I guess you got tired of repeating the Favre/Childress story so you bring out something that is around 2 weeks old!
    Slow news day in the NFL?

  12. chapnasty says: Dec 22, 2009 4:55 PM

    It’s a good thing we don’t hear from everyone who holds some sort of record every time someone comes close to breaking it. No one gives a damn what these old men have to say so stop reporting about them and allowing them a forum to speak.

  13. Xenu_D_Alien says: Dec 22, 2009 4:55 PM

    Mercury Morris is probably recording a rap song dissing the Colts, so he’s too busy to do interviews.

  14. Drat says: Dec 22, 2009 5:00 PM

    Power to Shula and the undefeated Dolphins. Not my team — actually, i really didn’t/don’t like them. But they won it all. It is not grumpy for them to watch this each year and root for their own legacy. I wish them the best. May nobody ever beat their mark. And all the sleazy media sleazing about trying to figure out a sleazy reason why the old fins want the record to stand: You are sleazy.
    Go Fins. Dive Colts.

  15. Bottlenose says: Dec 22, 2009 5:01 PM

    To say that the only undefeated season in the history of the NFL means nothing now is simply ignorant.
    Respect the history of the game.

  16. BobsCountryBunker says: Dec 22, 2009 5:01 PM

    “We get accused of being a bunch of grumpy old guys that get together and hope and pray that the last undefeated team gets beaten and that’s not true at all… excuse me a minute… HEY, YOU PUNK COLTS GET OFF MY LAWN… now, you were saying…”

  17. Cubano says: Dec 22, 2009 5:02 PM

    Shula might be full of crap, but man oh man can that old fart cook a steak!

  18. ZombieRevolution says: Dec 22, 2009 5:04 PM

    “Still, the annual bottle of champagne that gets popped when the last undefeated team loses creates a much different image.”
    Didn’t I read somewhere, from a outlet that actually does research for its stories that very few of the old Dolphins get together for the champagne celebration?
    Florio- stirring the pot of muck to see how many webhits he can generate. What’s next- asking if Manning is better than Brady or if Brees is in their league?

  19. PeteG427 says: Dec 22, 2009 5:05 PM

    On any given Sunday, any NFL team can defeat another NFL team……except the 1972 Miami Dolphins.
    Handle it.

  20. Dayton Dolfan says: Dec 22, 2009 5:06 PM

    Virutalplague, they did not have easiest schedule in NFL history, they had the easiest schedule of any Super Bowl Champion. And that is just part of the story. They had to go on the road to win two playoff games to get the to Super Bowl, unlike todays teams. One of those games was in Pittsburgh. Yeah there was no parity back then like there is now, but that just means its easier to go undefeated now because the league is full of mediocre teams. Yeah, Miami had to beat some bad teams back then, but that alos had to beat the premier teams who bought all the talent too. Want more proof. how about the fact that in the entire decade of the 70s not only was there not another undefeated team, there was only one other super bowl champion with only 1 loss. If it was so easy to go undefeated back then, how do you explain that. There wasn’t another 1 loss super bowl winner until 1985. Miami had the #1 Offense and the Number #1 defense, an accomplishment no other Super Bowl winner can claim.
    The ’72 Fins are the greatest team ever.

  21. nfloco says: Dec 22, 2009 5:08 PM

    Undefeated SEASON. A technicality. The Colts are already better than that team to those that understand the NFL and how hard it is to reach 19 wins. Still, I guess we have to hear all this until there is an undefeated SEASON for one team.
    And finally….I don’t think any of those old grumpy guys can handle partying all nite with Mercury when the record does get broken. The bail and the nosebleeds would be painful.

  22. BuckyBadger says: Dec 22, 2009 5:12 PM

    I am no fan of the Dolphins but if I was a team that went undefeated I wouldn’t want anyone else to. These guys are highly competitive and only sports writers who have always been on the outside looking wouldn’t understand that.

  23. chunky soupy sales says: Dec 22, 2009 5:14 PM

    This whole situation is the gayest.

  24. Occam says: Dec 22, 2009 5:14 PM

    “The 72 Dolphins had the second easiest schedule in the history of the NFL and they played in an era before free agency. Their accomplishment means nothing now. ”
    Now, I have officially heard everything.

  25. Big Stretch says: Dec 22, 2009 5:18 PM

    Why is this such a big deal for people? Of course the dolphins pop a bottle when the last undefeated to goes down, who wouldn’t? People talk about how easy their schedule was or that the season was shorter, or whatever other excuse they want to make, but at the end of the day Miami played an entire season without losing a game. I’m sure Jack Nicklaus doesn’t want Tiger Woods to win more majors than him, and we all know Favre doesnt want anyone to beat his ironman streak, hell I don’t want anyone i know to eat more than 5 and a half bacon cheese burgers in 30 minutes either. And I openly route for those who try to vomit all over themselves. So why is anyone surprised the dolphins don’t want another team to go undefeated?
    Florio, would you want another blogger to hit it big and take your spot at halftime of the Notre Dame games?

  26. GRpatriot says: Dec 22, 2009 5:19 PM

    Mercury is quiet cause his hairpiece is too tight!

  27. biggs13 says: Dec 22, 2009 5:20 PM

    Perfect
    Undefeated
    Unbeaten
    Grumpy old man or not, I’d kiss that ring given the chance!
    Everyone else is drinking Hatorade.

  28. RWFV says: Dec 22, 2009 5:28 PM

    I didn’t start hating the 72 dolphins until Mercury Morris ran his flapper.

  29. ravenfan820 says: Dec 22, 2009 5:36 PM

    I have just one question….is there any other person or team that annually celebrates at the end of the season when their record is not broken?
    Shame on Shula and the 72 Dolphins

  30. AronB says: Dec 22, 2009 5:45 PM

    Drinking the Hatorade…

  31. bbq says: Dec 22, 2009 6:01 PM

    72 Apologist said:
    “The Patriots didn’t deserve it.”
    How do you figure? If anything, they deserved it in 2007 more than the Colts or Saints do this year.
    They fielded the most dominant offense of all time and absolutely raped almost every team on their schedule. The Colts and Saints have been having close calls all year… the Patriots didn’t start having those types of games until I was already attending 2007 Christmas parties.
    The 2007 Patriots would beat the 2009 Colts. Hands down.

  32. Richm2256 says: Dec 22, 2009 6:05 PM

    72 Apologist says:
    The Patriots didn’t deserve it.
    ————————————————
    Please enlighten us as to the logic behind that moronic statement.
    Before you spew off about that “Spygate” crap, please remember that the league put a stop to this taping before the first quarter of the first game of the season was over. With the entire NFL looking over their shoulders at their every move, the Patriots went undefeated for the next 17 and 3/4 games.
    So again, PLEASE tell us why the Patriots “didn’t deserve” it in 2007?

  33. Dayton Dolfan says: Dec 22, 2009 6:11 PM

    ravenfan820,
    no probably not, but there is no other record like it. it is one of a kind. unique. unprecedented and unmatched. and that is why they celebrate it.

  34. wock says: Dec 22, 2009 6:17 PM

    As others have mentioned… this whole controversy is about 99.8% MEDIA generated. A true story about two teammates who shared a toast ONE TIME upon an occasion that they were out to dinner anyway… get’s ‘poetic licensed’ by unscrupulous sportswriters into the entire team meeting each year to celebrate.
    It’s BS… meant to sell newspapers, content, and generate interest.
    As for Mercury Morris “flapping his gum’s” as some mention… if he didn’t have 30 calls a day from those same journalists (who perpetuate a lie because it helps generate interest in the meaningless BS they write) anytime a team got over 10 wins without a defeat – none of these young fans talking sh!t about a team most of them never saw play would even know who Mercury Morris is.
    So call them grumpy… call them unsportsmanlike if you like… b!tch and whine because you don’t like what Mercury has to say…
    But at the end of the day, whether you like it or not… you have to call them perfect.

  35. bigrig says: Dec 22, 2009 6:19 PM

    Why doesn’t Shula ever mention the ’71 Dolphins who also did something no other team has ever done?
    You know, be the only team to not score a touchdown in the SB.
    Dallas 24, Miami 3. Celebrate that Don.

  36. wock says: Dec 22, 2009 6:20 PM

    # Richm2256 says: So again, PLEASE tell us why the Patriots “didn’t deserve” it in 2007?
    —————————————————
    How about because that teams record ends with a – 1 instead of a – 0 moron?

  37. Dayton Dolfan says: Dec 22, 2009 6:28 PM

    speaking of spygate,
    funny how the Patsies haven’t won anything since spygate happened. before spygate, 3 superbowls. since spygate, nada. Now they are just a run of the mill 9-5 team. they used to be a defense that shut people down, now they cant stop anyone. they used to dominate the 2nd half of games, now they get outscored in the second half. yeah, the league busted em in the first week of the 2007 season, but by that time they already had tapes on all the teams signals. Since then, teams have changes. coaches have changed.
    Hey tom Brady, how many points are you going to score on the Giants?

  38. VicksPuppies says: Dec 22, 2009 6:50 PM

    A lot of the ’72 team seem to have a bug up their butts, and I have always thought it was because no one thinks much about the record in terms of some of the great accomplishments in NFL history.

  39. Outlander says: Dec 22, 2009 6:56 PM

    I don’t begrudge the ’72 Dolphins their champagne toasts. I myself hoist a class of bubbly every time one of them dies.

  40. Newtrocknee says: Dec 22, 2009 6:58 PM

    The 1972 Dolphins also used their back-up QB for most of that season after Griese got hurt. And, as mentioned, they got nothing for being the top seed that year. Easy schedule or not, no one else has run the table since. Want to shut Mercury up? Go unbeaten.

  41. bigrig says: Dec 22, 2009 7:02 PM

    Don Shula likes to keep the focus on that ’72 team.
    Otherwise people might remember he suffered the biggest loss in NFL history in getting hammered by the Jets in SB III.
    Or that he shares the record for most SB losses with Bud Grant, Marv Levy, and Dan Reeves with four.
    Add the ’64 championship loss to the Browns and Shula has another record he can brag about.

  42. virtualplague says: Dec 22, 2009 7:03 PM

    The Dolphins suck.

  43. Quibstick says: Dec 22, 2009 7:20 PM

    Why can’t they share the record with someone else? It’s not like anyone is going to take it off them (unless we go to a 17 or 18 game regular season).

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