Jake Scott, the rebellious defensive star of the Miami Dolphins’ Super Bowl teams in the 1970s, died after a fall in in his home in Atlanta.
He was 75 years old.
Scott was the Most Valuable Player of the 1972 season’s Super Bowl after his two interceptions helped defeat Washington and secure the Dolphins’ undefeated season.
“To lose a teammate and a friend and a partner for all those years, no words can express how I feel,’' said Dick Anderson, who played safety opposite Scott during those great Dolphins teams.
Scott became the fifth starter on the 17-0 team to die in the two-year span of 2019 and 2020. Coach Don Shula also died in that timeframe on May 4, 2020.
Scott came to the Dolphins in a move that told of the full package the Dolphins were getting. He feuded with Georgia coach Vince Dooley and left the school as a junior in 1969. The NFL didn’t accept underclassmen at the time and Scott played in Canada for a year.
Scott’s college teammate, Bill Stanfill, was a Dolphins defensive end and told the team how Scott wanted to play in the NFL. The Dolphins used that insider knowledge to draft him for a seventh-round pick in 1970.
It might have been the best draft value in franchise history as Scott went on to play in five Pro Bowls and still leads is the franchise’s career interception leader with 35.
Scott also was known for playing hurt. He played the 1971 season’s Super Bowl with two broken wrists that caused him to say, “I know who my friends are when I go to the bathroom.”
Before the 1972 season’s Super Bowl, he was questionable with a bad shoulder and the fact his status was in doubt caused oddsmaker Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder to move the betting line from Washington as a two to three-point favorite.
Scott was traded in 1976 after feuding with Don Shula. Their split continued for more than three decades until they hugged each other at a memorabilia show in 2009.
“It was time,’' Scott said about getting together with Shula.
Scott split time between Hawaii and Atlanta in his retirement. He was put on the Dolphins Honor Roll in 2010.
“We are saddened to learn of the passing of Jake Scott,’' the Dolphins said in a statement. “Jake made an impact from the day he joined the Dolphins in 1970, going on to earn five Pro Bowl selections, a place on the Dolphins Honor Roll and was the MVP of Super Bowl VII, capping off the only perfect season in NFL history. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends. He will always have a place in our hearts and memories.”