The Miami Dolphins management team really, really wanted Jeff Fisher to become its next head coach. The franchise made an “all in” recruiting pitch to land him last week.

And then Fisher met with Rams owner Stan Kroenke and St. Louis became his favored destination. Barring an unexpected and dramatic turn in discussions, http://msn.foxsports.com/video/shows/nfl-on-fox?vid=e08d1007-a795-4f80-b223-c88a0da07f63&from=foxsports/NFL+Football/headlines"> Fisher should take the Rams job as soon as today.

Here is what media types are writing about this:

Armando Salguero, Miami Herald:  “The Dolphins, you must understand, would never admit Fisher is the guy they want because if they don’t land him, they don’t want anyone tagging the eventual hire as the secondary choice. For the Dolphins, that’s logical. Fisher is the leading choice simply because he is the safest bet. He was an NFL head coach for 17 years before eccentric Tennessee owner Bud Adams fired him in 2010. He compiled a 142-120 record (.542 winning percentage) with the Titans and is known and respected in venues throughout the league. He has a fine reputation. He has experience. He has credibility. Fisher knows how to be successful, and he’ll know it his first day on the job rather than having to learn by trial and error. So he’s the guy.”

James Walker, ESPN.com: “Reading the tea leaves, Miami may want to start looking for a Plan B. I would be surprised if Fisher, Miami's first choice, chooses the Dolphins next week. There are too many reasons St. Louis' job is a better fit. The Rams have better draft picks, an empty spot at general manager and a potential franchise quarterback in (Sam) Bradford. Those are things the Dolphins cannot compete with. This was Miami's only chance to make a splash by getting a top-tier coach with experience. If Fisher chooses St. Louis next week, the Dolphins likely will go the assistant route. Miami has already interviewed Chicago Bears special teams coach Dave Toub, Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Joe Philbin and Dolphins interim coach Todd Bowles.”

Ben Volin, Palm Beach Post: “The Rams have a more flexible salary cap situation ($45 million coming available in 2013), a more stable quarterback situation with former No. 1 pick Sam Bradford and a close connection to Fisher, whose agent, Marvin Demoff, is the father of the Rams' chief operating officer, Kevin Demoff. The Dolphins reportedly offered Fisher an attractive financial package. But if they strike out, they appear prepared to move forward with offensive-minded coaches, as owner Stephen Ross has made clear that his top priority with the Dolphins is finding a franchise quarterback and having an exciting offense. Philbin, 50, has helped the Packers finish in the top-10 in the league in total offense and points scored in each of his five years in the league.”

David Hyde, South Florida Sun-Sentinel: “Here, to me, is the hardest part of endorsing any coaching candidate for the Dolphins: The Other Guy has worked out better. When the Dolphins hired the legend of Bill Parcells in 2008, Atlanta hired an unknown front-office guy, a small-ego coach and a quarterback with the regime's first pick. It's in the playoffs for the third time in four years. When the Dolphins chose college champion Nick Saban in 2005 and quarterback Daunte Culpepper a year later, New Orleans married itself to unknown Sean Payton and Drew Brees. It won a Super Bowl. It's in the playoffs for the fourth time in six years. This time, Jeff Fisher is the solid choice with solid credentials. He's known. He's knowledgeable. He has the kind of track record that explains why the Dolphins and St. Louis Rams are fighting over him. Who doesn't agree he's the most complete candidate? Joe Philbin is the other guy.”

Mike Freeman, CBSSports.com: “Jeff Fisher continues to contemplate coaching the Rams or the Dolphins, though it is increasingly looking like Fisher has all but made a decision. A source close to Fisher says the former Titans coach is ‘95 percent certain’ he's going to accept an offer from the Rams. An official decision could come early next week. Now, there's a caveat here, and it's a big one. It's the wallet of Miami owner Stephen Ross. It's very possible Ross makes a huge, final offer that could sway Fisher. So far, a source says, that hasn't happened. But that doesn't mean it won't and that's the only reason, I'm told, it's not a totally done deal. Fisher is waiting for the final word from Ross. A source also confirmed Fisher has a fear the Rams might move to Los Angeles, though that isn't said to be a deal-breaker. But everything continues to point to Fisher coaching the Rams with the Ross wallet being the only possible hangup.”

MYSTERIES OF THE UNIVERSE

Questions to ponder while waiting for Fisher to make up his mind:

Who knew Charles Barkley http://breakfastbytes.yardbarker.com/blog/breakfastbytes/charles_barkley_nails_his_shaquille_oneal_imitation/9222103"> could do such a great Shaquille O'Neal imitation?

Speaking of Sir Charles, http://www.sportspickle.com/video/9387/charles-barkley-likes-his-weight-watchers-scam-hates-the-atlanta-hawks"> shouldn't he watch what he says during the commercial breaks?

Is anybody surprised that the Colts have already zeroed in Andrew Luck? http://www.onionsportsnetwork.com/articles/andrew-luck-repeatedly-mentions-how-good-his-neck,26962/"> Given Peyton Manning's neck condition, isn't Luck the perfect choice?

Say, does Jon Gruden http://thebiglead.com/index.php/2012/01/09/roundup-tebow-brady-rematch-sports-columnist-leaves-for-radio-show-lsu-alabama-bcs-title-game-links/"> ever watch the evening news on TV?

TEBOW TIME!

Just when you thought the NFL exposed Tim Tebow’s many mechanical flaws at quarterback, he stepped up and delivered another wildly uneven but dramatically successful performance.

While the Steelers scratch their heads this week, the Broncos move on in the NFL playoffs.

“He showed he's a quarterback in the NFL, case closed,” Broncos running back Willis McGahee told reporters. “They say he couldn't throw. They said we wouldn't be able to run the ball on them. We did that. I wonder what they're going to say next week.”

MEGAPHONE

“I'd expect it to be big-boy football.”

— LSU coach Les Miles, on his team’s BCS showdown with Alabama.