This weekend, the Miami Dolphins will host the Green Bay Packers in a Week 6 showdown. Later this season, when another NFC North team visits Sun Life Stadium, the Dolphins will be adding a special ceremony to the game. In the December 21st contest against the Minnesota Vikings, Miami will induct defensive tackle Manny Fernandez into their Ring of Honor and Honor Roll, making him the 27th person to be so honored.
"I can't tell you what a tremendous honor this is and how humbled I am to join the 26 others in that ring," Fernandez told the media during Wednesday's announcement. "It's a really big moment in my life and kind of chokes me up a little bit.
Fernandez spent eight years with the Dolphins, signing as an undrafted free agent in 1968. The Dolphins wanted the University of Utah product to add some appeal to the Miami hispanic fan base, despite the fact that Fernandez does not speak Spanish. Fernandez liked the idea of joining the Dolphins because it was a young franchise, and a roster he felt he could make.
"Manny Fernandez was the first of several elite defensive tackles who played for the Miami Dolphins," Miami Dolphins Senior Vice President of Special Projects & Alumni Relations Nat Moore said. "Fernandez was an expert at controlling the line of scrimmage on defense and freeing up the linebackers to run and make tackles. We’re elated to celebrate his accomplishments by welcoming him to the prestigious Honor Roll."
Fernandez started 93 games with Miami, appearing in 10 more. He was a member of the Super Bowl VII and VIII Champion Dolphins, including the 17-0 Perfect Season team. During the culminating title game for that undefeated season, Super Bowl VII, Fernandez recorded 17 tackles, though he was not named the game's MVP - an honor that went to safety Jake Scott.
"Hell, that didn't matter," Fernandez said of being shunned the recognition he deserved as the game's MVP. "It didn't matter then, it doesn't matter now. We won. It's a team sport. Jake was a good friend, and he's a good friend now and he had a good game. It was just a great effort by everybody that day."
The previous 26 members of the Dolphins Honor Roll are:
Founder Joe Robbie, 1966-89 (Sept. 16, 1990)
FB Larry Csonka, 1968-74, 1979 (Nov. 19, 1990)
QB Bob Griese, 1967-80 (Nov. 19, 1990)
C Jim Langer, 1970-79 (Nov. 19, 1990)
WR Paul Warfield, 1970-74 (Nov. 19, 1990)
LB Nick Buoniconti, 1969-76 (Nov. 18, 1991)
1972 Undefeated Team (Nov. 16, 1992)
G Larry Little, 1969-80 (Dec. 13, 1993)
C Dwight Stephenson, 1980-87 (Dec. 12, 1994)
G Bob Kuechenberg, 1970-84 (Dec. 11, 1995)
Head Coach Don Shula, 1970-95 (Nov. 25, 1996)
WR Nat Moore, 1974-86 (Dec. 5, 1999)
QB Dan Marino, 1983-99 (Sept. 17, 2000)
WR Mark Clayton, 1983-92 (Dec. 15, 2003)
WR Mark Duper, 1982-92 (Dec. 15, 2003)
S Dick Anderson, 1968-77 (Dec. 3, 2006)
T Richmond Webb, 1990-2000 (Dec. 25, 2006)
NT Bob Baumhower, 1977-86 (Dec. 14, 2008)
DE Doug Betters, 1978-87 (Dec. 14, 2008)
S Jake Scott, 1970-75 (Nov. 18, 2010)
DE Bill Stanfill, 1969-76 (Nov. 18, 2010)
TE (Broadcaster) Jim Mandich, 1970-77, 1992-04, 2007-10 (Dec. 4, 2011)
DE/LB Jason Taylor 1997-07, 2009, 2011 (Oct. 14, 2012)
LB Zach Thomas 1996-2007 (Oct. 14, 2012)
Assistant Coach Bill Arnsparger 1970-73, 1976-83 (Dec. 14, 2012)
LB John Offerdahl (1986-93) (Oct. 31, 2013)
The Week 16 ceremony will take place at halftime.