Former Baltimore Colts QB Earl Morrall dies at 79

Earl Morrall, an NFL quarterback for 21 years who helped lead the Baltimore Colts to two Super Bowls, has died at the age of 79.

Morrall played for the Colts from 1968 to 71. Subbing for an injured Johnny Unitas in 1968, Morrall led the Colts to a 13-1 record and won the NFL MVP en route to leading the team to Super Bowl III.

The Colts were upset by the Jets 16-7 that year. However, Morrall got redemption two years later when the Colts defeated the Dallas Cowboys 16-13 in Super Bowl V. In that game, Morrall replaced an injured Unitas and helped the Colts set up kicker Jim O’Brien for the game-winning 32-yard field goal.

Morrall also started nine games during for the Miami Dolphins during the team’s perfect season in 1972.

When Bob Griese broke his ankle in 1972, Morrall came off the bench and started the final nine games of the regular season for the Dolphins. Morrall won praise from coach Don Shula for his willingness to step aside when Griese returned for the AFC championship game.

Morrall also played for the 49ers, Steelers, Lions and Giants.For his career, Morrall played in 255 games, completing 1,379 passes for 20,809 yards and 161 touchdowns.


The Associated Press contributed to this story.

Print this article Back to Top