Photo via YouTube/CBS broadcast
There are no moral victories in the National Football League, but sometimes defeats come with memorable efforts.
For former Miami Dolphins wide receiver Brian Hartline, that was the case on this day 10 years ago. Hartline set the team’s single-game record with 253 yards receiving in a 24-21 overtime loss to the Arizona Cardinals.
Setting the Stage
With a rookie head coach in Joe Philbin and a rookie quarterback in Ryan Tannehill, Miami was 1-2 as it arrived at University of Phoenix Stadium on Sept. 30, 2012. The Dolphins were looking to even their record.
At 3-0, Arizona was looking to remain perfect. Thanks in large part to Hartline, that would be no easy task.
Hartline Has a Record Day
On the day, Hartline would haul in 12 passes for 253 yards. Miami raced to an early 13-0 lead, but trailing 14-13 in the fourth quarter, it was Hartline who put the Dolphins back in front.
On an 80-yard touchdown pass from Tannehill midway through the period, Hartline not only put the Dolphins in front but he set the team record for receiving yards in a game. His final reception of the day bested Chris Chambers’ record of 238 yards set nine years earlier.
Javorskie Lane, who scored the first touchdown for Miami, caught the 2-point conversion to push the lead to 21-14.
Miami was one stop away from victory, but Arizona drew even on Kevin Kolb’s touchdown pass to Andre Roberts in the final minute. In overtime, an interception thrown by Tannehill would set up the winning score for Arizona. Jay Feeley’s 46-yard field goal ended the contest.
Miami finished with 480 yards of offense to 297 for the Cardinals, but four turnovers was too much to overcome. Tannehill passed for a career-high 431 yards but was intercepted twice and lost a fumble.
Hartline wasn’t the only Miami receiver to have a big day. Davone Bess added seven catches for 123 yards. Roberts led Arizona with 118 yards receiving and two touchdowns.
Kolb passed for 324 yards and three touchdowns in the win while the Miami defense held Arizona to just 28 yards rushing. Sean Smith had a pair of interceptions for the Dolphins in the loss.
Recap and Box Score:
The Dolphins bounced back from the loss to win three straight games and improve to 4-3. That, however, would be the only time in 2012 that Miami had a winning record. It finished 7-9.
With the win, Arizona improved to 4-0, but it would win just one more time during a 5-11 season. The lone overtime victory that season for the Cardinals came despite a record-breaking performance from Hartline. It came on this day a decade ago.