Blown out of the water: Biggest blowouts in Dolphin history

Miami fans let their dogs out as they celebrate the Dolphins fumble recovery against the Packers during the fourth quarter Sunday.  PHOTO BY:  RICHARD GRAULICH
Miami fans let their dogs out as they celebrate the Dolphins fumble recovery against the Packers during the fourth quarter Sunday. (PHOTO: RICHARD GRAULICH)

When a team is around for as long as the Miami Dolphins, they are bound to end up on the right end of a blowout or two.

In 2015, the Dolphins’ largest margin of victory was 28 points, a 38-10 road victory on Oct. 18 against the Tennessee Titans. The year before, the Dolphins won at home 37-0 against the San Diego Chargers.

As the Dolphins prepare for the 2016 season — fostering hopes of blowing out their opponents — here’s a look at the five largest victories in franchise history.

Running back Lorenzo Hampton of the Miami Dolphins runs with the ball during a game against the New York Jets at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  Mandatory Credit: T. G. Higgins /Allsport
Running back Lorenzo Hampton of the Miami Dolphins runs with the ball during a game against the New York Jets at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Mandatory Credit: T. G. Higgins /Allsport

5) Nov. 24, 1986: Miami Dolphins 45, New York Jets 3

The 10-1 Jets entered their Week 12 matchup with the 5-6 Dolphins as just two-point favorites. The Dolphins jumped out to a 21-0 lead at the half and didn’t look back from there, adding another 24 points over the final two quarters.

Quarterback Dan Marino threw for 288 yards and four touchdowns, while running back Lorenzo Hampton added another 148 yards and two scores on the ground.

The lone Jets score came from a third-quarter field goal by Pat Leahy.

4) Sept. 10, 1978: Miami Dolphins 42, Baltimore Colts 0

A Week 2 matchup featured the 0-1 Colts against the 0-1 Dolphins at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore. The Fins jumped out to a quick lead in the first quarter on a Norris Thomas’ 53-yard interception return. Miami would go on to add three more touchdowns before the half and held a 28-point lead at the break. After a scoreless third quarter, the Dolphins added two more rushing touchdowns in the fourth to complete the blowout.

Quarterback Don Strock threw for 151 yards and three touchdowns on the day. Miami also featured a balanced rushing attack, with four backs rushing for over 48 yards, led by Leroy Harris’ 79-yard performance.

3) Oct. 19, 1975: Miami Dolphins 43, New York Jets 0

A Bob Griese 5-yard rushing touchdown started the scoring for the 3-1 Dolphins as they took on the 2-2 Jets in Week 5 at Shea Stadium. Miami added three scores in the second quarter to take a 26-0 lead into the half. After adding two more passing touchdowns in the third quarter, Miami capped off its scoring with an 18-yard field goal by Garo Yepremian in the fourth.

Quarterback Bob Griese completed 10 of his 14 passes for 155 yards and 3 touchdowns, and running back Mercury Morris ran 16 times for 114 yards and a touchdown. The Dolphins defense was able to intercept Jets quarterback Joe Namath six times, a number that nearly matched Namath’s number of completions, eight.

2) Nov. 11, 1973: Miami Dolphins 44, Baltimore Colts 0

Coming off an undefeated season in 1972, the Dolphins entered Week 9 of the following campaign at 7-1. Miami jumped out to an early 17-0 first-quarter lead against the 2-6 Colts thanks to a 48-yard Mercury Morris rushing touchdown and a blocked punt returned for a score by Tim Foley. The Dolphins would add 27 more points in the final three quarters while shutting out the Colts offense.

The Miami offense was led by Morris, who rushed for 144 yards on 12 carries and found paydirt twice. Charlie Leigh and Don Nottingham also posted 67 and 56 yards on the ground, respectively. Two Baltimore quarterbacks combined for just 59 passing yards on 22 attempts.

1) Nov. 12, 1972: Miami Dolphins 52, New England Patriots 0

An 8-0 Dolphins team that was destined for NFL immortality faced off at home against a 2-6 Patriots team. And it was all downhill for the Pats from there.

The Dolphins jumped out to an early 17-point lead in the first quarter and continued to add to their lead, scoring 14 more in the second quarter. Miami would go on to score again in the third quarter and twice in the fourth, including a 51-yard touchdown pass from Jim Del Gaizo to Marlin Briscoe, to secure the biggest point differential in team history.

Del Gaizo completed four passes for 145 yards and two touchdown and Briscoe caught four passes for 128 yards and two scores. Mercury Morris added 90 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. New England’s Mike Walker failed to convert the team’s only field-goal attempt.

Don Shula, Mercury Morris supportive of Panthers’ undefeated run

Former Miami Dolphin Eugene "Mercury" Morris speaks during a press conference anouncing Reebok's new television campaign -dubbed "Perfectville"- featuring members of the only undeated team in NFL history- the 1972 Miami Dolphins on February 1, 2008 at the Phoenix Convention Center in Phoenix, Arizona (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images for Reebok)
Former Miami Dolphin Eugene “Mercury” Morris speaks during a press conference announcing Reebok’s new television campaign -dubbed “Perfectville”- featuring members of the only undefeated team in NFL history- the 1972 Miami Dolphins on Feb. 1, 2008 in Phoenix. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images for Reebok)

There’s a misconception (well, a partial misconception) among both fans and foes of the Miami Dolphins — particularly their unbeaten 1972 team — that the old-time players and coaches root each year against current-day NFL teams equaling (or, God forbid, bettering) their 17-0 record.

Running back Mercury Morris has been the most outspoken of the ’72ers, trolling the nearly unbeaten Patriots back in 2007 and more recently discussing how hard it is complete an undefeated season in this — or any — day and age:

“Go ask the Patriots how difficult it is to do it and how they feel about some little kid in Guatemala wearing those perfect 19-0 Super Bowl tees.”

BURN!

In that same interview, when asked what would happen if Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers were able to best the mark of the ’72 Fins this season, Morris responded by asking, “Do you know the second biggest canyon in the U.S.? No, because everyone only knows about the Grand Canyon. No one cares about the second to do anything.”

DOUBLE BURN!!

But perhaps the Dolphins legends are starting to mellow as time goes on.

The official Twitter account of legendary Dolphins coach Don Shula sent out this tweet during the Panthers game Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons.

Yes, Shula and family are dabbing in honor of Newton, Carolina’s star quarterback and MVP candidate. But they’re also supporting Shula’s son Mike, who is the Panthers’ offensive coordinator.

Of course, the Panthers went on to lose to the Falcons 20-13, prompting many to imagine Morris and his teammates popping the corks on bottles of bubbly.

But that wasn’t the case, according to Morris.

Still, Morris took the time to appreciate some relevant artwork: