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As a result of Shula's signing, the team was charged with tampering by the NFL, which forced the Dolphins to give their first-round pick to the Colts.The decision was controversial because Shula and Robbie's negotiations and signing were conducted before and after the official NFL/AFL merger, respectively.
After the 1969 season, Joe Robbie, owner of the Miami Dolphins, signed Shula to a contract to become Miami's second head coach.In 1967, the Colts again failed to make the playoffs despite a regular-season record of 11–1–2, losing the newly created Coastal Division on a tiebreaker with the Los Angeles Rams because the Rams scored more points in the games between the two clubs.Shula tried to ease Unitas back into the lineup, but the quarterback's injury flared up numerous times, culminating with a game against Cleveland when he had just one completion and three interceptions.He had only two losing seasons in his 33-year career as a head coach in the NFL. In his first Super Bowl, the Colts set the record for the longest period to be shut out, not scoring until remained in the game.At his next Super Bowl, the Dolphins set the Super Bowl record for the lowest points scored by any team, with one field goal.
As Shula's family expanded—he had six siblings, including a set of triplets born in 1936—his father got a job in the local fishing industry for $15 a week, and later worked at a rayon plant in nearby Painesville, Ohio.