Guest Blog: By Keith Sims (Dolphins Guard 1990-1997, 3-time Pro Bowl selection)
These games are in random order. There are wins and losses. This was a fun exercise to think back on those games. Enjoy my list!
November 27, 1994 Fins at Jets – “The Fake Spike game”
Following back-to-back losses we were struggling. The Jets raced out to a 17-0 lead, and we were playing catch-up from there. We cut the lead to 24-21 and got the ball back with 2:34 left and no timeouts. Dan Marino drove us to the Jets eight-yard line. At this point Marino called out “Clock! Clock! Clock!” in anticipation of him spiking the ball to stop the clock. I wish he had told us he wasn’t going to spike the ball. I was trying to be a good actor not even trying to block the defender. The Jets bought it hook, line and sinker. The play resulted in a game-winning TD pass to Mark Ingram. The stunned Jets faltered on their final drive and “The Fake Spike” became one of the most famous and bizarre finishes in NFL history.
January 17, 1993- AFC Championship loss to Bill lost 29-10
One week after spanking the Chargers, 31-0, we were back in the AFC championship game. We knew we had the offense to compete with the Bills’ “K-Gun”, and with the additions on defense we were ready to move past the Bills and make a Super Bowl. I should have known that when your starting running back shows up late (after pregame warm ups) this was not going to be our day. I can still see Thurman Thomas taking that little slip screen and running free into the our secondary. We lost to our hated rivals, the Bills, at home and cost me what turned out to be my best shot at a Super Bowl trip! I didn’t go out in public for days after this loss. This was the most painful loss of my entire football career.
January 5, 1991- Wild Card win vs. K.C. Chiefs – My first playoff game and a great win! 17-16! We had a game-winning drive with under two minutes to play. Marino ran the two-minute drive great and made a perfect pass to Mark Clayton, inches away from the defender’s hands for the winning touchdown. I have a picture of us celebrating the winning touchdown in the end zone!
Nov 19, 1990 – 1st Monday night football game vs LA Raiders: “My battle with Howie Long” (L, 13-10)
How could I ever forget my first ever Monday night game. It was a home game and Joe Robbie Stadium was electric. I had to block Hall of Fame defensive end Howie Long. He lined up as a rush defensive tackle right over me on every passing play. What a battle. I won my share and didn’t give up a sack. But I can tell you I was exhausted mentally and physically after that game. And to this day his Raider’s jersey hangs in my rec room. He signed it and wrote, “Great battling you, Howie Long HOF”.
We traveled to Dallas on Thanksgiving to play the Cowboys. The Fins had an 8-2 record, without the injured Marino. Keith Byars breaks a long touchdown run and falls into the end zone snow and makes snow angels. Down 14-13, we line up for a 41-yard FG. It’s blocked but our buddy Leon Lett tries to pick it up and fumbles the ball back to us. We line up with five seconds left to try again and the FG is perfect. Dolphins win! The thing to understand is Dolphins special team coach Mike Westoff, the night before that game, went over the rule about if the field goal is blocked and the other team touches the ball we could recover it and regain the ball. We were prepared, the Cowboys were not.
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