American Football: Marino plays through pain to down Jets

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The Independent Online
Miami's Dan Marino climbed off the treatment table to lead the Dolphins to a 24-17 win over the New York Jets and leave them level with the Jets and New England at the top of the AFC East. Marino, doubtful for the game with a sprained ankle, completed 18 out of 29 passes for 186 yards, including a 23-year touchdown pass to Brett Perriman.

Marino, who has completed 55 per cent of his passes for 2,260 yards this season, missed most of the week's training but was able to construct a winning game on Sunday in his sixth consecutive start over the Jets.

Green Bay, Denver and Minnesota continued their run of success. Denver's Darrien Gordon became only the eighth player in NFL history to return two punts for touchdowns in one game, running back both in the snow during the first quarter of a 34-0 rout of Carolina.

John Elway completed 14 of 23 passes for 227 yards, with Shannon Sharpe catching eight throws for 174 yards in the Broncos' 14th home victory in succession.

Green Bay won their 21st home game in a row, a club record, as Brett Favre threw for 306 yards and a touchdown, and ran for another score in a 17-7 triumph over St Louis. Antonio Freeman caught seven passes for 160 yards for the Packers, who kept pace with Minnesota in the NFC Central.

Minnesota's Leroy Hoard scored on a one-yard touchdown run with 54 seconds remaining in the game to give Minnesota a sixth win in a row, 29-22 over Chicago. The Vikings are off to their best start since 1976.