SAN DIEGO, JAN. 31 -- The pass that changed the Super Bowl was a "fade" route, and it won't ever fade from Ricky Sanders' memory.

Fifth play of the second quarter. Broncos 10, Redskins 0. Doug Williams gimpy. Sanders jittery. Had already fumbled a kickoff. Had already dropped a pass. Did somebody say goat?

It was then that Williams -- facing first and 10 at his own 20 -- called for the "fade." It's a play designed for a guaranteed five yards. Usually, the defensive back plays way off, and the receiver goes five steps and turns around. And that's that. Usually.

This time, Denver cornerback Mark Haynes came up. Too close for comfort, Sanders decided to head long. Williams threw it up, Sanders caught it and outran two Broncos to the end zone.

Broncos 10, Redskins 7. A spike. A high-five. Momentum. Did somebody say hero?

That was the first of five second quarter Redskins touchdowns, as the Redskins romped, 42-10. Sanders had one of the other touchdowns, too, a 50-yard pass and run that came on what he called "a sucker play."

In other words, the running back takes a fake, and, hopefully, the strong safety is born yesterday and goes for it. Sure enough, that's what happened, and Sanders was running free in the secondary. In all, Sanders -- a former running back, a former USFL receiver -- had nine catches for 193 yards in the first half.

With the score 10-0, Broncos, he had fumbled returning a kickoff. Denver seemingly had recovered, because Broncos players kept saying, "Our ball, our ball." Sanders had his hands on his helmet.

"I had the jitters coming into a big game like this," he said. "I didn't perform like I should have."

Part of it was the slippery turf at San Diego Jack Murphy Stadium, which was manicured to look beautiful by groundskeeper George Toma, but was as slippery as a hockey rink.

"I was slipping," Sanders said. " I couldn't keep my feet, couldn't keep my footing out there, and I had to change to some longer spikes. After the third kickoff return {the fumble}, I couldn't get up field like I wanted to, so I changed {cleats}."

His footing obtained, the Redskins got their foot in the door of this football game. The 80-yard touchdown turned a dismal day into the darndest one.

"I've always dreamed of days like this," Sanders said. I've always watched the Super Bowls and watched the super receivers like Lynn Swann, and to break his record is a lifetime dream."

His 193 yards was the most yards receiving in one game, and Sanders also set the rcord for most combined yards in one game (235, previously 209 by Marcus Allen in Super Bowl XVIII against the Redskins).

Williams and he seem to having a thing going. They hooked up for long touchdowns in games against Philadelphia and Minnesota, and it's safe to say Sanders is Williams' favorite receiver.

And no one is saying, "Why?".