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Former Dolphins exec Bob Ackles dies [Updated]

Bob Ackles, who was Jimmy Johnson's right-hand man in personnel matters from 1996 through January of 2000, has died.

Ackles suffered an apparent heart attack Sunday while on his boat, according The Canadian Press. He was 69 years old.

Ackles worked for the Dolphins, Cowboys, Eagles, Cardinals and in the CFL for the BC Lions. Following his five seasons with the Dolphins, he had a short stint with the Las Vegas Outlaws before that XFL team and the league went belly-up.

Ackles was hired by Johnson because he impressed the coach while both worked for the Dallas Cowboys in the early 90s. Ackles did everything from negotiate contracts to suggest player signings. His management style was sometimes brusque, sometimes haphazard. There were a couple of instances when he clashed with others within the Miami organization but generally he was well-liked. When Dave Wannstedt took over in 2000 Ackles was demoted and that ultimately hastened his departure by 2001.

Ackles' greatest contribution to the Dolphins was tapping into his CFL knowledge. He was the man most responsible for bringing guard Mark Dixon to the Dolphins. Dixon became a starter in 1998 and played at near Pro Bowl levels before being sidelined by injuries.

It was in the CFL that Ackles, a Canadian, made his greatest impact. He started out as the first water boy of the BC Lions in the 1950s. He was serving as the team's president and CEO when he passed. Ackles celebrated that rise by titling his autobiography The Water Boy.

He named his boat The Water Buoy. It was on that boat that Ackles breathed his last. He apparently was fetching a newspaper when he just dropped.

Ackles is survived by his wife Kay, two sons Scott and Steve, and five grandchildren.

Update: Dolphins head trainer Kevin O'Neill, one of the few remaining holdovers from the Johnson era, found out of Ackles' passing Sunday evening and informed the team. Today the Dolphins made a significant editing change to their media guide as it arrived at the printer. The 2008 Dolphins media guide will mark Ackles' passing and be dedicated to his memory.

Updated again: The Dolphins have released a statement from team president Bryan Wiedmeier. Here it is:

"We were saddened to learn about the untimely passing of our friend and colleague, Bob Ackles. During his time in Miami, no one worked harder than he did to maintain our success. He was highly respected by everyone he worked with, both within the Dolphin organization and throughout the National Football League.

“Bob started every day with a smile and kept that same upbeat disposition no matter the circumstances. As someone who worked his way up the pro football ladder from the bottom, he never forgot his roots. He would treat ball boys and interns the same way he did coaches and players  --  with respect, appreciation, and admiration.

"He will be missed by everyone who was lucky enough to know him, and on behalf of the entire Dolphin organization I want to express our condolences to his wife, Kay, and his family.”


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You are finally back, men, that was a long vacation.

Sorry to hear about Bob Ackles Armando. My condolences to his family...

Perhaps if Wannstedt had kept him around his drafts might not have been so disastrous. Much like Mike Westhoff, Wannstedt was supposed to be such a nice guy but it certainly seemed his ego was easy bruised. That should have been the indicator to Huizenga that he lacked the confidence to be a great leader. We're still suffering from his ineptitude.

Good to see you back Armando

"He apparently was fetching a newspaper when he just dropped."


Now, can we get back to some football?

On my fantasy team (my first time doing fantasy) I drafted both Miami running backs. Don't know who I should place higher on my roster. Any opinions?

Hmm...Armando goes on vacation...former Dolphins exec dies whilst on boat...(suspenseful music plays)...

Tinshaker I would start Ricky over Ronnie at least at the beginning because Ricky should be game 1 starter since Ronnie is not 100% but any running backs in a commitee situation is never a good thing but if They bring Ronnie back slowly all year long Ricky could have some value especially that he is in a contract year and has mentioned that he was to play 4 more years but i hope you drafted more running backs

Go Phins

Welcome back big-boy. I think I speak for several people when I say we missed you. It's interesting that you wrote Ackles could be think I remember you writing a few years ago that he wouldn't talk to certain people within the organization including this guy Wiedermier, who is now the club president. I would be interested to find out if the Dolphins will send Wiedermier to the funeral to represent the team.

Where are all the idiots that speculated Armando had been fired in the Herald downsizing? You don't get rid of the paper's most popular sports columnist.

I didn't speculate that he'd been fired. I speculated that FARC had him! Then I was admonished!

Welcome back Armando!

The little runt was every bit as responsible for JJ trying to bench me as anyone. He would whisper in Johnson's ear that I wasn't mobile enough because he had all these ideas of what a QB should be from his CFL days.

sad to say, but rumor has it that he was picking up his Herald & collapsed when he realized that Armando had no column today despite his return from vacation.

Armando, looking back at the JJ days, how much personnel decision making did Ackles have? Was it 9 guys with a single vote and JJ had 10 votes or did he take the advice from people like Ackles? Still intrigued about why Jimmy was able to build up the defense through the draft, but whiffed so bad (Yatil Green, John Avery, not picking Randy Moss, etc) on the offensive side of the ball.

finfan in orlando :
my first rounder in Fred Taylor. I tried to get Steven Jackson ahead of him.

On a dolphins note, I'm an avid football video gamer and on Madden '08 I've reached the 2015 Season and needed to sign a coaching staff. Both Zach Thomas and Jason Taylor were listed as available coaches.

Oh and if you ever wanted proof that NFL players don't get listed at their actual size, I saw an interview from Dallas with Zach, and he was dwarfed by the interviewer. 5' 9" maybe?

Who was speculating Armando had been fired? Hadn't seen any comments like that but I haven't read through in a while. He's a lucky guy since most of us return from vacation with an overload of work and an underwhelming motivation to get back into it. At least he comes back well before anything is going on so he can take a couple weeks to ease back in.

Looking forward to updates from Training camp.

who drafts fred taylor in the first round?

THANK GOD!!! i really thought i was going to lose it. No mando updates for a month. hope vacation was good. Glad to see you back and healthy its just a shame your first post had to be a sad one.
Peace Love and Dolphins in '08

shawn m, the guy who was picking twelfth.

Welcome back Mando...

Welcome back Mando. I second the statement, who drafts Fred Taylor first round?! That guy's as injury prone as a 70 year old man(and plays in a run by committee). That being said, I would put Ricky in for the first few games. I think they will put Ronnie on training wheels the first few.

hey tinshaker what pick was Manning and Brady?

=) mando, welcome back

RIP Mr. Ackles. Welcome back Armando! I guess were not going to get a "What I did on my Summer vacation" report? ;-)

finfan in orlando, I wasn't actually there for the draft (had a meeting) and like I said, this is my first attempt ever at fantasy football, I haven't a clue what I'm doing, and it's not for money, so I don't care that much. I'd much rather follow a real team, but I signed up just because I'm seriously jonesing for anything related to football, and this is the only thing happening right now. That said, I think Brady went number eight, and it depends on which Manning you're talking about, neither of which I was interested in.

Don't want to talk about it too much incase I get banned for living in a 'fantasy' world! :)

hey tinshaker I was just asking because i'm curious where certain players fall in the draft as I will be doing my draft soon.....there really is no exact science to fantasy drafts and its hard to compare them from league to league like i have buddies that play in a touchdown only league which to me is no fun because there is not enough scoring. I manage a league that has a lot of scoring categories and in a league like ours you mostly go for who ever gets you the most points and the one thing you mostly look for is who finishes the season last year I took Peyton Manning with the 5th pick and won the super bowl because he plays all the way through which is important because you want your 1st pick playing in the fantasy superbowl that is usually week 16. On the other hand I picked frank gore in another league based on his proformance the year before and he bombed on me big time and i did not even make the playoffs. Seeing the end of the year and how unreliable the running backs where last year I don't know if any are a sure thing even though its hard to pass on LT I would thing Peterson would be second but I question his durability you almost have to hand cuff him to chester taylor......So in other words sometimes getting a high scoring QB is not so bad they are usually dependeble Peyton is usually money and so is (vomit) Brady (vomit) sorry if I'm typeing to much but I love talking Fantasy Football

Go Phins

finfan, like I said, I got called into an unexpected lunch meeting (I only joined that league because the draft was during lunch!) so I didn't get to be as saavy as I would've liked. I know LT and Peterson(who was my top choice) went one and two, and pretty much all the top RBs were in the top ten, except for Brady who was the only QB in the first round. I ended up with Hasslebeck and what I hope will be a sleeper in Jason Campbell now that he's getting a west coast system and has loads of talented receivers. My league is the kind with about 20 scoring categories, so there's a lot of factors besides just touchdowns, for example a touchdown scores six, but i also get six if a player has 60 receiving yards.

Like I said, I'm just doing it for fun and testing the waters so I have no expectations and would rather pick players I'd actually follow than the aformentioned vomit.

I agree Tinshaker I could not have brady on my team either

Thats a very nice QB pick

Hasslebeck will have a hugh year what recievers did you get

finfan in orlando, I got all ex-dolphins! Booker, Chambers, and Welker! lol! Oh and some guy named Sidney Rice as my fourth.

I was very happy with Hasslebeck. I hear about him all the time on a TV show called The View. Seems like a well rested QB. Yes, I'm joking.

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