Among the most significant strokes of luck for the Miami Dolphins organization was available in 1983 when the group saw quarterback Dan Marino topple to the 27th-overall pick in the draft. From there, the rest was history. The Dolphins quarterback re-wrote the record book for NFL passing in a single season and profession by the time he called it gives up in early 2000. For 17 years, Marino worked as a staple for the Dolphins and kept the team consistently in the leading edge of the league.

That 1983 quarterback class is stuff of legends, too. In Between John Elway, Jim Kelly, Tony Eason, Todd Blackledge, Ken O’Brien and Marino, six overall quarterbacks entered the preliminary. Half would go on to become NFL Hall of Famers. And the Dolphins in some way managed to select the best passer of the bunch regardless of choosing at 27th total. Marino’s tumble was assisted by his hometown Pittsburgh Steelers handing down him and the New york city Jets rather deciding to prepare O’Brien just 3 slots ahead of Miami.

One of the groups involved in the quarterback market that year was the Dallas Cowboys, who were coming off a 6-3 strike shortened season in 1982 under the instructions of famous coach Tom Landry. Dallas, who chose 23rd because famous draft, included Danny White at quarterback. How close was Marino to becoming a Dallas Cowboy? Hall of Fame scout and Cowboys legend Gil Brandt shed some light on how close Miami was to getting Marino nabbed out from their grasp back in 1983.

The good news is, Dallas was “Elway or bust” at quarterback. Brandt indicates that Dallas provided a sizable haul for Elway, once that trade offer was declined, the group didn’t appear too crazy about moving to the next quarterback in line, who would have been Dan Marino. Dallas, picking 23rd and plainly thinking about a quarterback, had their QB2 and 9th-overall player in Dan Marino sitting on the board at the end of the preliminary. They handed down him.

And then Marino passed for 420 touchdowns for the Miami Dolphins.