Monday, December 7, 1992
RICE HELPS 49ERS RIP DOLPHINS
Jerry Rice showed he's a receiver for all seasons.
He caught his 101st career scoring pass on a rainy Sunday at Candlestick
Park to become the league's career leader. In the process, he helped the
San Francisco 49ers to a 27-3 victory over the Miami Dolphins.
"I've been chasing this for a long, long time," Rice said. "It's
a lot of pressure off me now. I can go next week and relax."
Rice, who tied Seattle standout Steve Largent with his 100th scoring reception
last week, caught a 12-yard pass from Steve Young for the record-setter
with 8 minutes 56 seconds remaining.
"I still admire Steve Largent," Rice said. "He played an
important part in my football career - just watching him come up with catches
- unbelievable catches."
Rice set the record in his eighth season; it took Largent 14.
"(Rice is) probably the best receiver who's ever played the game and
he showed that ability today in making great catches in tough weather,"
Miami quarterback Dan Marino said.
After an intentional grounding penalty set the 49ers back, Rice ran a quick
slant to beat the single coverage by J.B. Brown, coming open over the middle,
where he gathered in Young's pass as the rain poured.
"I wanted to stay in the game and help the team to win. At the end,
I got the chance," Rice said. "Steve put the ball right where
I could catch it."
He was mobbed by teammates in the end zone and then ran off the field triumphantly,
thrusting the ball into the air.
"He's had a lot of victims," Brown said. "It was unfortunate
for me, but those things happen and you just have to go on."
Rice, the 49ers' leading career receiver, finished with seven receptions
for 79 yards. He has 593 catches, ninth on the NFL list, and he surpassed
10,000 receiving yards, the ninth player to do so. He now has 10,037.
Young said he was "really happy" Rice's score came when it did.
"It just put the game away."
Miami (8-5) conceded after the Rice score, bringing on reserve quarterback
Scott Mitchell for Marino.
"That's about as bad as it gets - we never challenged them," Miami
coach Don Shula said. "It would be pretty hard to feel good about anything
that happened out there."
Marino completed 19 of 31 passes for 192 yards, but couldn't get the Dolphins
into the end zone despite playing against a secondary that came in ranked
last in the league.
"We still continue to stop ourselves with penalties and turnovers,"
Marino said. "We didn't really get anything going. It's really frustrating
for us offensively."
The Dolphins, losers of five of seven after a 6-0 start, lost a chance to
gain ground in the AFC East. Buffalo maintained a one-game lead over Miami
despite losing earlier Sunday to the New York Jets.
San Francisco (11-2), which already has clinched a playoff berth, won its
fifth successive game as fullback Tom Rathman scored twice. Rookie running
back Amp Lee also scored in his first NFL start. All Miami got was Pete
Stoyanovich's 32-yard field goal in the third quarter.