Dan Marino “Dan the Man”
Dan Marino was a quarterback who played 17 seasons in the National Football League (NFL), all of which were with the Miami Dolphins for 17 seasons. He is best known for his powerful arm and quick release. Many consider the quarterback as one of the greatest players to never win a Super Bowl, also having the most career wins for a quarterback but not winning a title.
This great player was born on September 15th, 1961 to Italian and Polish ancestry, however, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He started to play baseball in the Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh. At the age of 18, he was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the 4th round. He decided to turn down this offer and play college football.
He attended the University of Pittsburgh and immediately got into the game as a freshman. He led his team to a 24-17 win over West Virginia and also a more notable win over their longtime rivals – Penn State. From 1979 – 1981, Dan led his team to 33 wins and only lost three times in those three years. He finished college with 7,905 passing yards and 74 touchdowns which led to him being picked as the 27th in the first round by the Miami Dolphins.
Career Nickname – “Dan the Man”
This was the nickname that followed the quarterback because he continually won the hearts of South Floridians with his lightning-quick release, humility, and charity. He was the first rookie quarterback to ever start the Pro Bowl, ending his second season as NFL’s Most Valuable Player.
Dan was committed to the Dolphins as it was the first and only team he played for in the NFL. He was the 6th quarterback to join the team but proved to be the most effective on the field. He had great numbers in his rookie year, throwing 20 touchdowns, and guiding the Dolphins to a 12-4 record. At the end of the season, he was named NFL’s Rookie of the Year and was also the first rookie quarterback to start a Pro Bowl game.
He had his best season in his second year as a Dolphins quarterback making history with his 48 touchdowns and threw for 5,084 yards. Throughout his career as a pro football player, he was one of the NFL’s prolific passers with a career record passing total of (61,361 yards) in 8,358 attempts. Of those, he completed 4,967 passes and had 420 touchdowns.
After retiring in 2000, he joined an on-air crew of the CBS program, The NFL Today. He continued on that path till 2014 where he decided to go back to the Miami Dolphins, this time in the capacity of a special adviser – a position he still holds.
Marino was very instrumental in the Dolphins achievement in being playoff contenders as he led then to 10 postseasons out of his 17 years career. He however played two of the games (1984, 1992) due to injury even as he was selected as a starter 7 times in the 9 times he was selected to play in the Pro Bowl.
Three Major Individual Awards
Dan won all three major individual awards in the NFL for his work on and off the pitch. in 1984, he was NFL’s MVP, NFL Comeback Player of the Year in 1994, and NFL Man of the Year in 1998 for his charitable work.
Highest-Ranking Dolphins Player
In 1999, the list of the 100 greatest football players by The Sporting News ranked Marino as 27th. In 2010, he was also placed 25th on the NFL’s Top 100 Greatest Players List.
Hall of Fame
Dan the Man was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2005.
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