Remembering Dan Marino’s incredible streak of 759 passes without a sack

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When we noted on Sunday that Colts quarterback Andrew Luck had completed his fourth consecutive game without a sack, we heard from some folks wondering if Luck was at or near an NFL record for games without a sack. And the answer is, No. Not even close.

Dan Marino owns the NFL record for consecutive games and consecutive passes without a sack, and no other quarterback before or since has ever even been in the same ballpark. Marino got sacked on September 25, 1988 in Indianapolis. He then played 19 consecutive games without getting sacked. He wasn’t sacked again until October 29, 1989 in Buffalo. Between sacks, he threw an incredible 759 passes.

To throw 759 passes without getting sacked is such an insane record that it looks like a typo. The team that has allowed the fewest sacks this year is the Saints, and Drew Brees has been sacked nine times while throwing 304 passes. Marino threw two and a half times that many passes and wasn’t sacked even once.

Marino was well known for his quick release during his time as the Dolphins’ quarterback, and he could get the ball out so quickly that opposing defenses never stood a chance. For 19 straight games, no one could bring him down.

35 responses to “Remembering Dan Marino’s incredible streak of 759 passes without a sack

  1. Even more impressive when one thinks about Bruce Smith and Andre Tippet being in Marino’s division at the time. Those two men had 300+ career sacks between them.

  2. The fact that Dan Marino often gets left out of the conversation as greatest QB of all-time is criminal. It’s not his fault that Don Shula never gave him a defense or much of a running game. Marino was spectacular.

  3. It really is too bad that Marino never got to play with quality coaching. He may have been able to get a ring or two. Unfortunately, Old Man Shula was already well into his lawn protection period when Dan was drafted.

  4. Pretty impressive record. But 1988 strangely wasn’t one of Marino’s better seasons with 28 TDs/23 Ints and somehow 10 (!) fumbles, yet no sacks allowed. And the Dolphins only finished 6-10 that year (and 24TD/22int and 8-8 in 1989). Wish he could have had a redo in current times with a better team and QB friendly rules.

  5. Marino wasn’t even mobile or a scrambler, either. He would just do a quick side-step or shuffle forward to evade a pass rusher, and then get rid of the ball. His pocket presence was amazing. He also had an insane offensive line — for pass blocking, at least; not so great for run blocking.

  6. Come back
    We miss you and the way we always played
    you always had a chance even with under two minutes to play and we always were in the playoffs

    We suck now and that sucks………………

  7. Can you imagine the stat lines Marino would throw up in today’s game?

    Would be off the charts.

    30 years ago, the D could still do anything short of stabbing to prevent a yard being gained.

  8. Many would see his later years and comments like a couple weeks ago about Brady trying to get 1,000 career rushing yards and seeing Marino didn’t even have 100 and think he was a total statue.

    But before his Achilles injury that was just not the case. He rarely ran but was extremely good on rollouts and on throwing on the run. And he was amazing inside the pocket. He combined that quick release with fantastic footwork and excellent vision and decision making.

    Brady wasn’t great in the pocket his first few years but he says he tried to emulate Marino in the pocket. Now he’s one of the best pocket passers ever…

  9. Marino was great, but sadly my team could never win a championship even with his greatness. Heck, we only even made it once. Now I need to watch another team in the division that has made it 8 times in 17 years. And my team thinks it won the SB just because we beat them every few seasons.

  10. how in the hell did he lose 10 fumbles without getting sacked. thats a lot of bad snaps/ terrible hands under center

  11. When asked once about how he went through his progressions, Marino said “I just look for the open guy.”

  12. Chill_Donahue says:
    November 12, 2018 at 1:47 pm

    Pretty impressive record. But 1988 strangely wasn’t one of Marino’s better seasons with 28 TDs/23 Ints and somehow 10 (!) fumbles, yet no sacks allowed. And the Dolphins only finished 6-10 that year (and 24TD/22int and 8-8 in 1989). Wish he could have had a redo in current times with a better team and QB friendly rules.
    __________

    Kind of makes you think he probably should have taken a few sacks rather than throw the ball too early and get it intercepted.

  13. It’s remarkable, but needs an asterisk. He didn’t play against the hybrid LB’s and genetic freaks that constitute the pass rushers of today. It couldn’t happen now.

  14. Ken Anderson, playing in “dead ball” era of passers in the 70s (and some in the 80s, of course), had the same yards per attempt as Marino for a career. Marino threw the ball a heck of a lot more, of course. The 700+ is amazing. When he felt pressure, he just jacked it up, into any sort of crowd. He was very entertaining to watch and never felt like his teams were out of it.

  15. That’s why he is the only QB that figured out the Bears defense in 85. He was checking down and getting rid of the ball so quickly that the Bears never adjusted and he beat them. He’s probly the best QB to never win a ring. Its a shame he didn’t leave Miami and get one.

  16. rasalas says:
    November 12, 2018 at 1:47 pm
    Marino wasn’t even mobile or a scrambler, either. He would just do a quick side-step or shuffle forward to evade a pass rusher, and then get rid of the ball. His pocket presence was amazing. He also had an insane offensive line — for pass blocking, at least; not so great for run blocking.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    In ’88/’89?

    1988 OL
    65 Jeff Dellenbach C
    61 Roy Foster G
    62 Harry Galbreath G
    79 Jon Giesler T
    72 Ronnie Lee T
    1989 OL
    65 Jeff Dellenbach T
    74 Mark Dennis T
    61 Roy Foster G
    62 Harry Galbreath G
    76 Tom Toth G
    63 Jeff Uhlenhake C

    Total pro-bowls or all-pro: 0 (Unless you count TE Ferrell Edmunds in ’89) In this case the sum was truly greater than the parts. The no-sack record is due to Marino’s awesome pocket presence, rapid small shifts in the pocket, fast decision-making and ridiculously quick release.

  17. harveyredman says:
    November 12, 2018 at 9:34 pm
    One of the main reasons was his Center: Dwight Stephenson. He could handle any None Tackle one on one. And still pick up the blitz.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    True…but he was injured in ’87 and never played during that streak.

  18. It sucks how far we have fallen. As a teenager watching the Marino/Shula and Marino/Johnson dolphins I expected us to be in the playoffs. I used to get mad about losing in the divisional round. I’d give just about anything to have those years back.

    I think he still could have played a few more years. Wannstache forced him out. Wish JJ would have stuck it out a few more years and Marino could have gotten 1-2 seasons with prime Ricky Williams.

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