American Football Database
Don McNeal
File:Don McNeal.JPG
Date of birth: (1958-05-06) May 6, 1958 (age 64)
Place of birth: Atmore, AL
Career information
Position(s): Cornerback
Height: 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
College: Alabama
NFL Draft: 1980 / Round: 1 / Pick 21
 As player:
1980-1989 Miami Dolphins
Career highlights and awards
Awards: 1982 and 1984 Dolphins' Player of the Year, Captain of the Team for the 1979 Crimson Tide
Honors: Dolphins' Silver Anniversary team, 1992 Crimson Tide All-Centennial Team, 1979 First team All-American, 2 National Championships with the Crimson Tide, and 2 Super Bowl appearances with the Dolphins.
Playing stats at

Don McNeal (born May 6, 1958) is a former American professional football player who played cornerback for the Miami Dolphins in the 1980s.

McNeal was born and raised in Atmore, Alabama. He is a 1976 graduate of Escambia County (Alabama) High School where he was a star on the football team. He played college football at the University of Alabama for the legendary coach Paul "Bear" Bryant. McNeal played on Alabama's 1978 and 1979 national championship teams; he was Captain of the Team in 1979. In 1992, he was selected as a member of the University of Alabama All-Centennial Team.

The Miami Dolphins drafted McNeal as a defensive back in 1980. McNeal played in two Super Bowls with the Dolphins: Super Bowl XVII in January 1983 and Super Bowl XIX in January 1985. During the same two seasons that those Super Bowls were held (1982 & 1984), McNeal was named the Dolphins' Player of the Year. He retired at the end of the 1989 season having played his entire pro career with the Dolphins.

McNeal was involved in one of the more famous plays in the annals of professional football, which took place in Super Bowl XVII. Late in the game with fourth down and inches to go, McNeal was unable to bring down Washington Redskins running back John Riggins, and he rumbled 43 yards into the endzone for the game winning touchdown.[1] Riggins' Run is the Redskins' "Greatest Moment of all time" as voted on by Redskin fans. This became not only a famous play but also a famous photograph as well.

Today, McNeal is active in the community with associations that assist youth and adults. He serves as a drug-rehab counselor, teacher, coach, lay pastor, board member, and is a frequent public speaker. He is a pastor at New Testament Baptist Church in South Florida and speaker for Power Talent. His life is further described in his autobiography Home Team Advantage: From the fields of rural Alabama to the pro football field of the Miami Dolphins.[1][2]

On May 31, 2008 Don McNeal was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in Birmingham, Alabama.


See also