Norm Evans was a 6'5", 250 lb. tackle from Santa Fe, New Mexico. He was drafted from the TCU Horned Frogs in the 14th round of the 1965 AFL Entry Draft by the Houston Oilers. Throughout his career, he wore the number 73 jersey.
Evans appeared in every game through his rookie 1965 season, mostly on special teams. The Oilers finished 4-10, and left Evans unprotected in the 1966 expansion draft, where Miami picked him up.
Evans started every game for Miami at right tackle through the 1966 season. The new franchise took its share of lumps, finishing with a 3-11 record. Along with left tackle, Maxie Williams, the two ex-Oilers were the only offensive linemen to start every game. Miami's offense finished at or near the bottom in every offensive category.
For more on Evans, follow the jump.
In 1967, Evans again started each of Miami's 14 games at right tackle. The team finished with a slightly better 4-10 record. The only offensive categories Miami finished in the top half of the AFL were turnovers, interceptions, sacks allowed, and first downs gained by penalty.
1968 would see Evans start 12 of the 13 games in which he appeared at right tackle. Miami was again slightly improved, with a 5-8-1 record. The Dolphins ranked third in the AFL with 21 passing touchdowns, but led the AFL with 52 sacks allowed.
In 1969, Evans again started 12 of his 13 games for the Dolphins at right tackle. Miami's 3-10-1 record was the worst in the AFL. Miami's offense trailed all other teams in most categories. Nothing could prepare South Florida for what would happen next, as at the time the Dolphins were just terrible.
The AFL would join the NFL at the same time that Don Shula took over as head coach of the Dolphins, the 1970 season. Evans retained his usual spot, starting each game at right tackle. After losing the season opener to the Boston Patriots, 27-14, Miami had managed to win its next four games in a row. Things were starting to look up - but three consecutive losses, including back-to-back shutouts to the Cleveland Browns and the Baltimore Colts, had Miami faithful saying, "Here we go again, same old Dolphins." Miami would finish the season on a six game winning streak and a wildcard earning 10-4 record. The Dolphin's rushing offense led the AFC with 2,082 yards. Evan's started Miami's first ever postseason contest, a 21-14 loss to the Oakland Raiders.
In 1971, Evans started every game at right tackle. Miami was improved from 1970, winning the AFC East title with a 10-3-1 record. Miami's offense scored an AFC second best 315 points, and gained an AFC second best 4,412 yards. They also led the AFC by averaging 5.5 yards average gained per play, throwing an NFL low 10 interceptions. Miami's rushing attack led the NFL with 2,429 yards on an NFL best 5.0 yards per carry. Miami advanced to Super Bowl VI, losing to the Dallas Cowboys, 24-3.
1972 would see Miami finish the regular season at 14-0 as Evans started every game at right tackle. He earned his first Pro Bowl selection, one of nine Dolphins featured in the postseason All-Star event. Miami's offense led the NFL with 385 points scored and 5,036 yards gained. The rushing attack was especially lethal, setting the NFL bar by leading the league with 2,960 yards, 613 carries, and 26 touchdowns. The pass protection was also greatly improved, by allowing only 21 sacks. This allowed Miami's quarterback tandem of Bob Griese and Earl Morrall to lead the NFL with a collective 86.9 passer rating. Miami advanced to Super Bowl VII, defeating the favored Washington Redskins, 14-7.
Evans again started every game at right tackle for Miami in 1973. Miami's offense led the NFL by averaging 5.3 yards per offensive play. The passing offense combined for an AFC low 12 interceptions. Bob Griese threw eight in 13 games, throwing 17 touchdowns and going 12-1 with a passer rating of 84.3. Miami's rushing offense was second in the AFC with 2,521 yards gained. Miami tied for the NFL's best record at 12-2, defeating the Minnesota Vikings for their second consecutive Super Bowl victory, 24-7. Evans was selected to the AP All-AFC first team.
In 1974, Evans earned his second career Pro Bowl invitation, starting every Miami game at right tackle. The offense scored an NFL third best 327 points on the season, leading the NFL with 570 rushes for 2,191 yards. Miami posted an 11-3 record, winning the AFC East title by two games over the Buffalo Bills. The Oakland Raiders defeated the Dolphins in the divisional round of the NFL playoffs, 28-26 in a sea of hands.
Evans started 13 of his 14 Miami games in 1975 at right tackle as the team posted a 10-4 record, narrowly missing their sixth consecutive trip to the postseason. Miami's offense was third in the NFL with 26 rushing touchdowns and fourth with 2,500 ground yards.
When the Seattle Seahawks joined the NFL in 1976, Evans was again left unprotected in the expansion draft. He would play his final three seasons with the Seahawks, starting 25 of 36 games at right tackle.
Over 10 seasons with Miami, Evans started 135 of 138 games at right tackle, earning two Pro Bowl selections and two Super Bowl rings.
Who is Miami's best ever offensive tackle?
Richmond Webb (2899 votes)
Norm Evans (96 votes)
Jon Giesler (52 votes)
Ronnie Lee (17 votes)
Wayne Moore (24 votes)
Jake Long (1222 votes)
Doug Crusan (16 votes)
Eric Laakso (21 votes)
Vernon Carey (26 votes)
4373 total votes