Miserable day for Marino despite record

Click to follow
The Independent Online

MILESTONES ARE usually moments to be savoured, but it is unlikely that Dan Marino will relish the memory of the day he became the first quarterback in history to throw more than 60,000 career yards.

MILESTONES ARE usually moments to be savoured, but it is unlikely that Dan Marino will relish the memory of the day he became the first quarterback in history to throw more than 60,000 career yards.

The Miami playmaker threw a routine eight-yard completion to Tony Martin in his side's visit to the New England Patriots on Sunday to earn his place in the record books, but three plays later, an errant pass was intercepted and returned 58-yards for a touchdown by the Patriots' Andy Katzenmoyer.

Marino's misery was complete when he was forced out of the game suffering from neck spasms shortly afterwards. His replacement, Damon Huard, stole the show when he threw a touchdown to Stanley Pritchett with 23 seconds remaining to give the Dolphins a 31-30 victory.

The National Football League's only unbeaten team, the St Louis Rams, continued their impressive run with a 41-13 humbling of the Atlanta Falcons. For once their quarterback, Kurt Warner, was not the key factor, and was limited to one touchdown pass. But while the Falcons concentrated their efforts on containing him, they allowed the running back Marshall Faulk to gain 181 yards and a touchdown on 18 carries.

"We're going to do whatever teams allow us to do, whether its running or passing," Warner said. "We have all the facets going right now." Indeed they do, a 104-yard kick-off return from Tony Horne, and Grant Wistrom's 91-yard interception further underlining the Rams' resurgence.

There were fewer fireworks, but an almost equally impressive result in San Diego, where the Chargers claimed their fourth win from five games by beating the Seattle Seahawks 13-10. It was an ugly, error-strewn affair, with Erik Kramer, the Chargers' quarterback, yielding four interceptions in the second half alone. Despite Kramer's travails, they overcame their problems, John Carney's 41-yard field goal with three seconds remaining the difference between the two sides.

The Denver Broncos, winners of the last two Super Bowls, had looked out of contention after losing their first four contests, but they have enjoyed a slight revival, which continued with a 31-10 pounding of the Green Bay Packers.

Brian Griese, the young quarterback charged with the daunting task of following the retired John Elway, threw a pair of touchdowns to Ed McCaffrey, while the rookie running back, Olandis Gary, took advantage of injuries elsewhere to parade his talents, gaining 126 rushing yards and scoring a touchdown.

Randall Cunningham, the exciting veteran who led Minnesota's assault on the record books last season, continued his fall from grace. With his side trailing 19-0 in Detroit, Cunningham was benched in favour of Jeff George. His impact was to turn the deficit into a 20-19 Viking lead, but Detroit had the last word, Jason Hanson converting a 48-yard field goal with five seconds left to give the Lions a 25-23 win.

Comments