It is a sad day for the Miami Dolphins and the NFL. According to the Palm Beach Post’s Hal Habib, Hall of Fame linebacker Nick Buoniconti has passed away. He was 78-years old.
Buoniconti was a 13th round draft pick by the Boston Patriots in 1962, spending seven years with the club before being traded to the Dolphins. He played seven seasons with Miami, from 1969 through 1974 and in 1976. He was a six-time AFL All-Star selection and was named to two Pro Bowls. He was twice a Second-Team All-Pro after the AFL-NFL merger, having been a five team First-Team All-AFL selection and a three-time Second-Team All-AFL selection. He was selected to the AFL All-Time Team, is a member of the New England Patriots Hall of Fame, and is in the Dolphins’ Honor Roll. He was indicted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2001.
After his NFL career, Buoniconti worked as a lawyer and a sports agent, as well as broadcast work. He also served president of the US Tobacco Company in the 1970s and 1980s. He founded the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis following a football injury to his son, Marc, in 1985.
He was recently a subject of an HBO documentary, “The Many Lives of Nick Buoniconti,” which highlighted the Hall of Famer’s struggles with physical and mental health issues, including dementia and CTE symptoms, following his career.
Buoniconti had stated he would donate his brain to CTE studies following his death.