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PRO FOOTBALL : Colts Kick Up Heels, Beat Dolphins for First Time in 7 Years, 40-21

November 16, 1987| From Times Wire Services

MIAMI — Before the game, Indianapolis Coach Ron Meyer was almost afraid to say what he thought.

After Eric Dickerson rushed for 154 yards and Dean Biasucci kicked four field goals as the Colts overpowered the Miami Dolphins, 40-21, Meyer spoke his mind.

"I felt that if we could beat Miami, it would mark the resurgence of the Colts," said Meyer, who has led Indianapolis to 8 victories in 12 games since replacing Rod Dowhower late last season.

"Well, we beat Miami and we're (tied for) first place, so I guess the resurgence is here."

With the victory in their first game at Joe Robbie Stadium, Indianapolis (5-4) ended a 14-game, seven-year losing streak against the Colts.

Miami (4-5), which started the day in a five-way tie for the division lead with the Colts, Buffalo Bills, New England Patriots and New York Jets, committed five turnovers and got a sub-par passing performance from Dan Marino, who completed 14 of 34 attempts for 194 yards and 2 touchdowns.

Marino, without injured wide receiver Mark Duper, failed to complete 50% of his passes in a game for only the fifth time in his five-year career.

"When you make mistakes you've got to forget about it and make the next play," Marino said. "We just never seemed able to make the next play."

Miami led, 21-20, at halftime, but was shut out in the second half when Odom forced Lorenzo Hampton to fumble at the Indianapolis one, Marino threw one interception and Don Strock threw another on the game's final play.

"Going into the game we could either go ahead (in the AFC East) or tie for first," Miami Coach Don Shula said. "I thought we realized it going into the game, but after we jumped off to the 14 points we didn't do much after that."

Dickerson, starting his second game since Indianapolis obtained him in an Oct. 31 trade with the Rams, became the first runner to rush for more than 100 yards on the Dolphin defense this season.

Gary Hogeboom, returning to the Colts' lineup after missing three games with a rib injury, completed 22 of 39 passes for 218 yards.

Miami started quickly, building a 14-0 lead on Hampton's six-yard touchdown run and Marino's four-yard scoring pass to Dan Johnson. But things began to fall apart late in the first quarter.

After Dickerson scored on a four-yard run with 56 seconds remaining in the quarter, the Colts' Harvey Armstrong recovered a fumble at the Dolphins' 27 on the last play of the quarter.

Seconds into the second quarter, Hogeboom threw a seven-yard scoring pass to Bill Brooks.

Biasucci kicked field goals of 22, 32, 25 and 23 yards. The 25-yarder capped a 19-play, 90-yard drive that consumed 8:32 of the clock and gave the Colts a 23-21 lead with 1:12 left in the third quarter.

Albert Bentley, who lost the Colts' starting running back job when Dickerson was acquired, scored on runs of 17 and 2 yards in the fourth quarter when Indianapolis turned the game into a rout.

Marino's touchdown pass to Johnson extended the Miami quarterback's streak of consecutive games with at least one touchdown pass to 29, second longest in NFL history. Johnny Unitas holds the record of 47.

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