Dolphins' top plays: Lemon to Camarillo

July, 9, 2014
Jul 9
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Greg CamarilloJoe Rimkus Jr./Miami Herald/Getty Images
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This is the final of three plays nominated as the most memorable play in team history. Earlier this week we featured Miami Dolphins Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino's fake spike play against the New York Jets in 1994 and Hall of Fame coach Don Shula's "Hook and Lateral" play call in the divisional playoffs in 1982. Please vote for your choice as the Dolphins’ most memorable play.

Score: Dolphins 22, Ravens 16 (OT)
Date: Dec. 16, 2007 Site: Dolphin Stadium

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Which is the most memorable play in Dolphins' history?

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    79%
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    16%
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    5%

Discuss (Total votes: 33,173)

At a time when no one should have cared about this game, the Miami Dolphins were in the national spotlight for all the wrong reasons. Miami, a proud franchise with two Super Bowl titles and the undefeated 1972 team, was on the verge of also becoming the first NFL team to finish 0-16. No team had accomplished the feat since the NFL expanded to 16 games in 1978.

The Dolphins were brutal in 2007. They averaged a measly 16.7 points per game and allowed 27.3 points per game. Cam Cameron was an awful choice as head coach and was fired after one season. The Dolphins also went through three starting quarterbacks in 2007 and lost their first 13 games -- often in blowout fashion.

Enter Week 15, where the Dolphins were again underdogs against the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens were by no means world-beaters this season. They were 4-9 entering this contest. But Baltimore at least had talent, such a 1,000-yard rusher Willis McGahee and 1,000-yard receiver Derrick Mason on offense and future Hall of Famers Ray Lewis and Ed Reed on defense. Even in a down year, Baltimore was expected to win this game.

But in this game the Dolphins showed a resilience they had not shown all season. The Ravens jumped out to a 13-3 lead at halftime, and the Dolphins unexpectedly rallied in the second half behind quarterback Cleo Lemon (315 yards, one touchdown) and the game was tied 16-16 at the end of regulation.

In overtime, Lemon sent shockwaves throughout the NFL when he connected with receiver Greg Camarillo for a 64-yard touchdown throw to beat Baltimore and deliver Miami’s only win of the season. Lemon and Camarillo are two forgotten names when you think of the history of the Dolphins. But they prevented Miami from experiencing one of the most embarrassing chapters in franchise history.

Ironically, after the Dolphins narrowly avoided history, the Detroit Lions set the record a year later by going 0-16 in 2008.
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James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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