Once again, in a never-ending effort to keep up with my readers, I will answer a question that someone Googled to find this site:
In what game did Dan Marino’s Achilles tendon rupture?
Short answer: 1993 season, Week 6 @ Cleveland, the Dolphins won 24-14.
The Dolphins were coming off winning the AFC East and making an AFC Championship game appearance (they were defeated 29-10 at home by Buffalo), and were expected to make a Super Bowl run in 1993. The Bills were getting older, the Jets and Patriots were rebuilding, and the Colts were oh so miserable. The 1993 season was unique in that it was the only season in the modern NFL where each team had two bye weeks during the season. The Dolphins had theirs in week three of that year, and were fortunate to have their other bye week after Dan Marino got injured at Cleveland.
Marino was obviously out for the season, and was replaced by a combination of Scott Mitchell and Steve DeBerg. They actually did a pretty good job filling in for a while, winning five of their next six including Thanksgiving day against the Cowboys (courtesy of Leon Lett), placing them firmly in first place in the AFC East with a 9-2 record.
Then the bottom fell out.
The Dolphins lost their last five games of the season which included a brutal three-game stretch against the Giants, Steelers, and Bills. The Dolphins finished the year 9-7 and missed the playoffs entirely. Miami was plagued by turnovers, especially fumbles, during that stretch, and their team wasn’t good enough to overcome the turnover problem. Their last game of the season ended up being the first big win of the career of Drew Bledsoe, who let the Patriots to a 33-27 overtime win against the Dolphins in the last week of the season.
Marino returned to lead the Dolphins to the playoffs in 1994, but eventually lost to the San Diego Chargers 22-21 in the Divisional round after taking a 21-6 lead in the second half. San Diego would end up losing Super Bowl XXIX to the San Francisco 49ers, 49-26.