PHILADELPHIA, AUG. 30 -- Those who don't believe absence makes the heart grow fonder can ask Ron Jaworski about it.

In his 10 years as quarterback of the Philadelphia Eagles, Jaworski was often booed by home fans and last winter he was unceremoniously dropped by the team.

But Jaworski, returning Saturday night in a Miami Dolphins uniform, was greeted like a knight of King Arthur's Roundtable after a successful campaign. The crowd cheered for 20 seconds when he made his first appearance.

You'd of thought you were in Joe Robbie Stadium in Miami. This couldn't be a visiting player. Hey, this is a crowd that once booed Santa Claus.

"The {fan} reception was heartwarming," he said.

Jaworski tried to play the part of a gentleman, wishing Philadelphia Coach Buddy Ryan good luck on the field before the game.

"But he {Ryan} didn't seem enthused," Jaworski recalled after he helped the Dolphins beat the Eagles, 35-3.

"He looked a little nervous. He didn't say one word {to me}."

Jaworski started the second half and directed the Dolphins 44 yards to a touchdown in the third period. He threw 13 yards for the score, completing five of 11 passes for 83 yards.

"One thing I know from the last two weeks is that I still can play football," he said.

"The touchdown really felt great. I'd be lying if I said it didn't. It meant a lot. It was exciting."

Miami Coach Don Shula said of Jaworski, "Ron is really a cool customer. He's very bright. He has an accurate arm. He's in good shape. He knows what he's doing. And we like everything we've seen of him."

Jaworski had no comment on the banner hanging from one section of the end zone stands.

It read: "Bring back Jaws. Bye, bye Buddy."