Class of: 1995
Team: Boston Patriots
School: University of Notre Dame
Nick Buoniconti played his college football at the University of Notre Dame and was then taken in the American Football Draft by the Boston Patriots in 1962. With Boston, he appeared in five AFL All-Star Games. Nick recorded 24 interceptions, which is still the seventh-most in team history. He was named 2nd team All-AFL in 1963 and the following season began a run of five consensus All-AFL seasons in the following six seasons, missing only 1968 when he was named second-team All-AFL. Buoniconti is a member of the Patriots All-1960s (AFL) Team and the AFL All-Time Team. He was traded to the Miami Dolphins in 1969. Buoniconti continued to play well with the Dolphins, in 1969-74 and 1976, and made the AFL All-Star Team in 1969 and the NFL Pro Bowl in 1972 and 1973. Buoniconti was also named All-AFC in 1972. His leadership made him a cornerstone of the Dolphins’ defense. During his years there, the team advanced to three consecutive Super Bowl appearances, the second of which was the team’s 1972 undefeated season. In 1973, he recorded a then-team record 162 tackles (91 unassisted). He was named to the AFC-NFC Pro Bowl in 1972 and 1973. Buoniconti ended his career with an unofficial 24 sacks, 18 with the Patriots and six while with the Dolphins. He was named the Dolphins’ Most Valuable Player three times (1969, 1970, 1973). In 1990, he was voted as a linebacker on the Dolphins’ Silver Anniversary All-Time team.