Adoring fans fill stadium for Marino

Thursday, August 24th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

MIAMI – Dan Marino is at ease in the spotlight only when he has a football in his hands, and so Wednesday was not really his kind of night.

A sellout crowd of more than 50,000 gathered at Pro Player Stadium to hear Don Shula, John Elway, Terry Bradshaw and others pay tribute to the most prolific passer in NFL history. Marino mostly played spectator.

"It's kind of overwhelming," he said. "Thinking about all the terrific times I've had in this stadium, the emotions are tough."

The three-hour program was arranged by the Miami Dolphins after Marino, 38, reluctantly retired in March. The scope of the event reinforced the reality that his career is over after 17 NFL seasons, despite chants from the crowd of "One more year! One more year!"

The tribute brought together for the first time all six members of the quarterback class of 1983 – Marino, Elway, Jim Kelly, Ken O'Brien, Tony Eason and Todd Blackledge.