The year 1966 was the Miami Dolphins' inaugural season in the AFL East and by 1973 they had appeared in three Super Bowls under Don Shula.
In its 46-year history, the franchise has won two Super Bowls, five AFC Championships, 13 division titles and made 22 playoff appearances.
A franchise this successful is built on the talents of its players, coaches and managers, and although many of the Dolphins' all-time greats were drafted by the franchise, there are many excellent, even legendary, players who were originally acquired as free agents.
So, as free agency winds down leading up the 2011 NFL season, let's take a moment to look back at the seven best free-agent signings in Miami Dolphins' franchise history.
In the spirit of full disclosure, the discussion will look beyond players whose contracts have expired and include all unrestricted free agents, including waiver acquisitions and undrafted rookies.