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With one act of revolt, Jim Kiick was forever tied to the great Larry Csonka and Paul Warfield.
All three had been teammates together with the Miami Dolphins in the early 1970s during the team's glory years. Kiick, a halfback, and Csonka, a fullback, became known as Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid for their impressive exploits on the field and their close relationship off it.
In 1972, Kiick lost his starting job to the speedier Mercury Morris and collapsed into a new role as a short-yardage specialist. It seemed Kiick's time in the spotlight had passed.
That changed in 1975, when Csonka, Warfield and Kiick—still smarting from the Morris incident—signed three-year deals with the Memphis Southmen of the upstart World Football League.
From forgotten backup to star attraction, Kiick became part of the newly dubbed "Miami Trio." He received $700,000 in annual salary and re-assumed his role as a starter.
The glow wouldn't last long.
The WFL folded two-thirds of the way into their inaugural season and Kiick resumed life as an NFL backup for the final two years of his professional career.
In the end, his cumulative statistics didn't match his celebrity. For his career he averaged just 3.7 yards a carry and 32.7 yards per game.