Dan Marino, making his first pro appearance in his hometown, passed for 226 yards and two touchdowns today to lead the undefeated Miami Dolphins to a 31-7 rout of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Marino, the University of Pittsburgh's all-time offense leader, completed 16 of 24 passes with one interception -- just his fourth of the season -- for 226 total yards. His touchdown passes, both in the second quarter, went for three yards to Bruce Hardy and 34 yards to Joe Rose.
"I was a little more excited because of the chance to play in Pittsburgh," Marino said. "It's nice to know people were cheering a little. But there were some boos in there, too."
Miami's victory put the AFC East-leading Dolphins at 6-0 and dropped the AFC Central-leading Steelers to 3-3.
Dolphins Coach Don Shula said some wondered whether Marino would be "awed or intimidated. . . whether coming home would put too much pressure on him . . . (But) he just prepared all week long the way he has always prepared for us."
David Woodley, beaten out in Miami by Marino before being traded to Pittsburgh, left with a concussion midway through the first quarter and never returned. Neither did the Steelers' offense.
Woodley's replacement, Mark Malone, never moved the Steelers inside the Miami 40 until the Dolphins led 24-0. But Malone surpassed Marino's passing yardage, completing 19 of 42 passes for 228 yards with two interceptions.
"David was confused and couldn't recall the plays," Pittsburgh Coach Chuck Noll said. "The doctors wouldn't let him go back in. Yes, Mark was at a disadvantage, but part of winning is overcoming the disadvantage."
Miami nose tackle Bob Baumhower completed the Dolphins' 21-point, second-quarter burst by recovering and returning Malone's fumble 21 yards for a touchdown.
Uwe von Schamann kicked a 37-yard field goal for Miami in the third quarter and Woody Bennett scored the Dolphins' final touchdown on a one-yard plunge in the fourth.
The Steelers avoided what would have been their first shutout at home in 10 years in the third quarter on Frank Pollard's dive from the one. The loss still was Pittsburgh's most lopsided at home since Three Rivers Stadium opened in 1970.
"It was their show all the way -- on offense, defense and the special teams," said Noll.