Despite the Dolphins' losing record, Taylor's accomplishments simply couldn't be ignored, as he finished with 62 tackles, 13½ sacks, 14 quarterback hurries, two interceptions -- both returned for TDs -- 11 passes defensed, two fumble recoveries and an amazing 10 fumbles forced.
The voting for the award actually was fairly close, although it wasn't controversial candidate Shawne Merriman who finished second.
Merriman, who led the NFL with 17 sacks but was dismissed by some -- including Taylor -- as a worthy candidate because of his four-game steroid suspension, finished third in the balloting with six votes.
The runner-up to Taylor, who wound up with 22 of the 50 votes, actually was Denver cornerback Champ Bailey with 16 votes.
Taylor joins safety Dick Anderson (1973) and defensive end Doug Betters (1983) as Dolphins recipients of the NFL Defensive Player of the Year award.