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Thursday, November 5, 2009
Marino's record in the crosshairs

Posted by's Tim Graham

It's one of the most sacred stats for South Florida sports fans.

No, I'm not referring to the hallowed 188 -- Olli Jokinen's record for most goals by a Florida Panther.

I'm talking about 5,084, the number of yards Dan Marino passed for in one season. Marino broke Dan Fouts' NFL mark by more than two lengths of a field in 1984 and has fended off all challengers since.

New Orleans Saints bombardier Drew Brees fell 15 measly yards short last year, but other than that, only two quarterbacks have come within 200 yards in the quarter century Marino has owned the record. New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had the fourth-best season in NFL history when he threw for 4,806 yards in 2007.

Earlier this week, the NFL sent out a release that listed the 10 quarterbacks who are on pace to finish with more than 4,000 yards passing this year. The record for most quarterbacks to throw for 4,000 yards in a season is seven, set in 2007.

The NFL's chart, which accompanies this post, shows Peyton Manning is on pace to eclipse Marino's total by 6 yards. Ben Roethlisberger is having the second-most prolific season, but he would have to heat up over the season half to catch Marino.

"A few weeks ago, I looked at the league and I went through all the rosters and looked at all the quarterbacks," ESPN analyst Matt Millen said Wednesday on a conference call. "Of all the times that I can remember over the last 30 years, this might be the most [skilled] group of quarterbacks that I've seen at one time."

Quarterbacks On Pace For 4,000 Yards
Player Team Games Yards Yards/Game Projection
Peyton Manning Indianapolis 7 2,227 318.1 5,090
Ben Roethlisberger Pittsburgh 7 2,062 294.6 4,713
Matt Schaub Houston 8 2,342 292.8 4,684
Philip Rivers San Diego 7 2,036 290.9 4,654
Tom Brady New England 7 2,032 290.3 4,645
Drew Brees New Orleans 7
2,006 286.5 4,584
Aaron Rodgers Green Bay 7 1,989 284.1 4,546
Kurt Warner Arizona 7 1,914 273.4 4,375
Tony Romo Dallas 7 1,908 272.6 4,361
Joe Flacco Baltimore 7 1,849 264.1 4,226