Weekly lineup

 Friday, February 25
Tampa Bay doesn't look to be in Marino's future

 FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- The Tampa Bay Buccaneers apparently are passing on Dan Marino before he could pass for them.

Dan Marino
The Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel reported Friday that Tampa Bay coach Tony Dungy has all but ruled out the quarterback continuing his Hall of Fame career in Tampa Bay. Marino voided the final two years of his contract with the Miami Dolphins earlier this month.

"I would say you could probably put it to rest," Dungy told the paper about speculation his team would grab Marino. "I would like to talk to (Marino) just to tell him where we are and find out where he is. But I wouldn't see it happening.

"I don't see Dan as a No. 2 quarterback. It's hard for me to visualize that. I haven't heard from him, so I can't say specifically that he wouldn't want to do what I would foresee his role (being). I can't rule it out until I talk to him. But just from what I have in my mind, I don't see it happening."

Dungy said the Buccaneers are committed to Shaun King, who stepped into the starter role as a rookie this season and nearly took the club to the Super Bowl. Tampa Bay lost 11-6 to the St. Louis Rams in the NFC championship game.

The chances of Marino returning to the Dolphins appear slim, since the team signed Damon Huard to a contract extension and grabbed Jacksonville Jaguars' backup Jay Fiedler from the free agent market.

The 38-year-old Marino, who endured the most difficult season of his 17-year career, had the ability to void the last two years under terms of the pact he signed in June. He is expected to make a decision on his future sometime in March.

Speculation was so high Marino would end up with Tampa Bay that one South Florida newspaper superimposed a picture of him in a Buccaneers uniform the day after he voided his Dolphins contract.

The most prolific passer in NFL history, Marino missed five games and part of a sixth this season due to a neck injury. He completed 55 percent of his passes for 2,450 yards with 12 touchdowns and 17 interceptions, his highest total in a decade.


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