Jim Kiick, Miami Dolphins’ perfect return racing season, dies at age 73

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MIAMI – Jim Kiick, the running back versatile, who helped the Miami Dolphins reach the NFL only perfect season in 1972, died Saturday at the age of 73 following a battle with the disease Alzheimer’s, daughter Allie says.The former University of Wyoming star was part of a formidable back field that included his best friend, the Pro Football Hall of Fame back Larry Csonka. They earned the nicknames of Butch and Sundance, inspired by the popular 1969 film “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.”

Kiick (“Butch”) helped the American Football League All-Star team in his first two seasons and played Miami back-to-back Super Bowl championship teams in 1972-73. Kiick had two touchdown passes for the ’72 Dolphins in the AFC championship game, and also scored in the Super Bowl win that capped their 17-0 season in Pro Football Hall of Fame coach Ne Shula.

Shula died on May 4 at the age of 90.

Kiick has lived in a home living home for the past few years. Allie Kiick said that due to the coronavirus, visitors were not allowed into her room.

“I miss my dad,” she wrote on Twitter on Thursday. “It’s quite difficult when you’re sitting outside the window and there’s nothing you can do to cheer him up. He lost the sparkle in his eyes that anyone would be in this situation. ”

In his heyday in the NFL, Kiick and the acceleration of Mercure Morris split playing time with the Dolphins during the 1972-73 seasons, which gave Shula a powerful one-two punch at halfback but sometimes led to second guess by the fans.

“Kiick and the Mercure Morris have both contributed,” Shula said. “Every Monday there is controversy, but the bottom line is not bad.”

Csonka heightened the challenge for opponents. He and Kiick met at an all-star game in the summer, they joined the Dolphins, and as the constraint they parted together, partied together and briefly held together in search of better deals .

In 1975, Kiick, Csonka and future Hall of Famer Paul Warfield left the Dolphins for the WFL. The package was a watershed worth nearly $ 4 million over three years for the three players, who played for the Memphis Southmen.

But the WFL folded, and Kiick returned to the NFL for his last two seasons, playing for Denver and Washington.

James Forrest Kiick was born August. 9, 1946, in Lincoln Park, New Jersey. He led Wyoming by rushing three years into a row and was inducted into their Hall of Fame athletics in 1996.

Miami drafted Kiick in the fifth round in 1968. He became a starter as a rookie and led the AFL in rushing hit, in 1969, with nine.

He had his best statistical season for the 1971 Miami Super Bowl team when he rushed for the 738 yards and was averaging 4.6 yards per carry, both from career peaks.

Kiick was also a great blocker and a threat, like a receiver. He had 233 career receptions for 2.302 meters.

After retirement, Kiick worked as a private investigator for the Broward County public defender’s office.

“He is the best father I have ever asked for, and will forever remain a legend and my hero,” Allie Kiick wrote on Twitter after his death. She is a professional tennis player who was ranked in the top 150 on women in the tour.

Jim Kiick, father of George, played back for the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1940s and 1945.

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