Saturday, April 26, 2014

Earl Morrall, longtime NFL...

Earl Morrall, Don Shula and Bob Griese.
...quarterback, died at age 79. From his obit in the Times (my emphasis):

In April 1972 the Dolphins claimed him on $100 waivers and reunited him with their head coach, Don Shula, who had been the Colts’ coach.

When Morrall reported to the Dolphins’ training camp at age 38, his teammates called him Old Man, he said. But when Griese, the Dolphins’ No. 1 quarterback, sustained leg and ankle injuries in the fifth game of the season, against the San Diego Chargers, Morrall took over.

He helped the Dolphins to a 14-0 regular season, throwing for 11 touchdowns, although they were primarily a running team behind Larry Csonka and Mercury Morris.

Asked long afterward who he thought was the most valuable player for that Dolphins team, Morrall answered, “Bob Griese for breaking his ankle so I could play.”

And then this:

Morrall was later the quarterbacks coach at the University of Miami, where he tutored Vinny Testaverde, Bernie Kosar and Jim Kelly.

Nice work!

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