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The Fisher negotiation can be complex

Another day, another round of negotiations between Jeff Fisher and the Dolphins. And Jeff Fisher and the Rams.

And, I suppose, Jeff Fisher and his heart.

I cannot comment on the tug-of-war Fisher is having in picking either the Dolphins or the Rams. I don't know what's inside Fisher's mind or heart and he's not calling or texting or e-mailing to tell me -- yet.

I do know the way this will go is when Fisher, through his agent, has finished negotiating with one or the other team, he will inform the team he picks he'd like to work for them. And then that team will offer him the job as their next coach.

The team that does not win this Fisher tourney will continue searching for answers and have the plausible deniability of saying it never offered Fisher the job. But, really, who are we kidding?

These negotiations intrigue me in that they are not necessarily about money going to Fisher. They are about money to hire a coaching staff, which is important because Fisher is reportedly constructing an experienced and expensive one. (He has invested quite some time the past couple of days compiling a staff.)

The talks are also about power. And that's where Dolphins fans wanting Fisher should be worried.

The Dolphins, you see, have a general manager in place. And that GM, Jeff Ireland, currently has power to pick talent. But Fisher wants the power to have final say over his talent. So some way, somehow, the Dolphins have to find a way to massage the situation so that Fisher doesn't feel like the players he's going to have are being dictated to him.

The Rams don't have this problem because they currently don't have a general manager and aren't expected to hire a GM until Fisher has made a decision. And if Fisher goes to St. Louis, he will almost definitely have veto power over the general manager not to mention over the general manager's personnel decisions.

This doesn't mean Fisher doesn't like Ireland. I hear the opposite is true in that he likes Ireland and respects his work. This simply means Fisher doesn't want to be dictated to by Ireland. And so this has to be negotiated so it is acceptable to everyone

Unfortunately for the Dolphins that may not be the end of the power tug-of-war.

Fisher, you should know, had two defining issues while with the Tennessee Titans and they haunt him to this day to the point he doesn't really want to repeat them:

First, he had to juggle a franchise move from Houston to Memphis to Nashville that cost him a couple of seasons, cost him a competitive advantage, a fan base and home field advantage, cost him and his coaches life issues that he doesn't want to repeat should the Rams move from St. Louis.

The second defining issue that bothered Fisher in Tennessee was owner Bud Adams dictating personnel decisions to him. Adams basically forced Fisher to pick Vince Young although the coach didn't want to go in that direction. And while it seemed like the right move for a couple of seasons, ultimately it not only failed but indirectly led to Fisher's separation from the team. This is an issue for the coach. And so he wants to make sure neither Stan Kroenke in St. Louis nor Stephen Ross in Miami are going to be telling him which players he has to draft or sign or keep or cut.

Both these issues have to be negotiated and I suppose the team that comes closest to Fisher's stance will ultimately have a major advantage in getting the coach. It's not an easy situation for either team.

The Rams probably cannot guarantee Fisher they will never, ever, ever move. The truth is they might move if the dome where they play is not improved to the team's satisfaction. And so Fisher, knowing the possibility exists he might have to relive a franchise relocation, probably wants certain assurances to make that experience feel less like the root canal without novacaine that it felt like before. I don't pretend to know the specific details of this but -- speculating here -- it probably involves cost of living increases for his coaches and staff, it probably includes certain guarantees on the kind of facility the club would move into. I can't pretend to know how the sides will massage this.

The Dolphins don't have relocation issues and so that's a major advantage. But the club does have structure issues. Fisher probably wants some assurance from Ross that he won't dictate to him like Adams dictated to him. This is legitimate because, you'll remember, it was Ross who shut down the Kyle Orton trade possibility and got involved in the attempt to convince Mike Brown to trade Carson Palmer to the Dolphins. So can Ross promise he'll never dictate to Fisher? I have no idea. It has to be negotiated. No such negotiation probably has to happen with Kroenke, who is an avowed hands-off owner.

Obviously there are other issues that have to be overcome before Fisher picks a team, gets an offer, accepts the offer, signs a contract and takes control. Yes, it is complicated.

That's how things are when you have two teams that lately aren't known for having all their ducks lined up neatly in a row.

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Thanx, I will, but gotta go for now, the snow won't shovel itself.

Good morning guys,

Just because Fisher says he respects Ireland and his work does not mean he wants to work with him. I don't exactly know what Jeff Ireland is capable of to be honest. I mean he has had only 1 full draft and offseason without Parcells hovering over his head.

Judging this past offseason and if you rationally think about it Ireland did a nice job of adding some talent but also had his misses too. But it was his 1st and only offseason so it takes time to build a team. He had a fairly decent draft as a whole. He just failed to address the biggest need which was a potential franchise QB in the draft

Draft Grades:

Mike Pouncey - good player even if not to the level of his brother. Solid, safe, boring, good player. Grade: B minus

Daniel Thomas - early in the season had his moments but finished banged up all year and only 3.5 per carry. Ireland also traded up to get him in round 2 when a more pressing need could of been met like QB (Mallet). Grade: C minus

Edmond Gates - A complete non-factor. He can't run routes and although Sparano and company claimed he was close to breaking one I never saw it. Grade: F

Charles Clay - I wish they actually used him more but the coaches saw him every day and saw he was limited for now. Solid contributor for a 6th rounder. Grade: B minus

Frank Kearse - incomplete.

Jimmy Wilson - He seems to have something about him. Maybe he is a better fit at FS or maybe he is just a depth guy and ST player but I liked him and rooted for him to make plays all year. Grade: B (7th rounder guys)

All seem like relatively easy hurdles to overcome. Ireland is a scout first and foremost.....so yeah, keep him around, just don't give him any power.

As for Ross, he should keep his nose out of the football aspects of the business. He's a great businessman, but he's not a "football guy".

Easy peesy....and really, things can really only go one way from here.

Oh well, guess I'll find out later what happens. Off to the mountains with the family this AM for a long weekend. No internet....no t.v.....probably won't here the news until I get back Monday.

Have a good one everyone and enjoy the cackling today!

If the reports are true, say goodbye to Nolan and Daboll, and welcome Williams and Schottenheimer.

Isn't that dandy? We and the Jets swap our offensive geniuses. The future certainly looks bright.

The closer we get to Fisher, the more likely it will be a disaster.

fisher should do a show on his "decision" like lebron did.

b minus for pouncey? you are just looking to be down my friend. pouncey will be a top center for a decade. that pick was a big need. pick is an A for sure. like it or not.

With wolf man gone....looks like we got one less hen today.....

Free Agent Grades:

Taking a look at Ireland's 2011 Free Agents were a mixed bag as well but overall he did a solid job as well

Reggie Bush - great pick up via trade. Bush rushed for over 1000 yards and did it with averaging over 5 yards per carry. Grade: A

Kevin Burnett - seemed lost until he was stripped of play calling duties which seemed to me very odd in the first place considering Dansby is the highest paid defender and also was in the system the previous year. Nonetheless he got better and better each week after losing play calling duties and made plays. Grade: B minus

Matt Moore - I am not a Matt Moore supporter because I think he is a very good back up at best but he played well considering the circumstances and was a big part of the turn around for the Dolphins. Grade: B (always good to have a quality back up!)

Marc Columbo - Disaster at RT. He gave up 9 sacks and was constantly beat and giving up QB hurries. I can't believe John Jerry wouldn't have been a better option considering he played well stepping in for Jake Long. Grade: F

Marvin Mitchell and Jason Trusnik - Not sure if either is signed through next year but both were ST contributors and showed up on game day as solid core guys. Grade: C plus (didn't play spectacular but solid players)

Last but not least Jason Taylor - He doesn't get much love from me but he was the only LB not named Cam Wake to pressure the QB at all. He had 7 sacks I think and was effective as expected for 36-37 years old whatever he was. He didn't make any game changing plays and was just solid Grade: C plus


Pouncey may prove to be an "A". I hope he does and I hope Daniel Thomas turns it around I'm just judging off this past season. Pouncey had his moments but he also got pushed around a few games too. I dont think it was strength issue but more of a footwork placement thing. Also his shotgun snaps only showed its ugly head twice that I remember but not all of them come clean either. That's still an issue. I will stick with a B minus for now

you give bush an A ha, when we could have got sproles for half the price and no draft pick. i give that a C.

It's funny to me.....that those that come on this blog....talk about they're job title....and position/status in whatever line of work they have......

Those that like to tell us they are the MOST educated...and the MOST successful.....

It seems that those are the ones that can not grasp the simple concept of debate.....

They don't understand that it's not about right and wrong.....but rather...about the conversation....and getting your thoughts out there....and hearing others......

Dang U.S. School system.....

why can't Ross have final say? Or they have to both agree on a player before signing. So each one has a veto power.
I don't think fisher should have the final say. This is the GMs job.

It is absolutely astounding that the Dolphins are allowing Fisher to hold them hostage like this! It appears they have completely stopped interviewing candidates and are on their knees right now Tebowing that Fisher will make up his mind and pick their franchise. Are you kidding me? What's this say about how lost and desperate this front office really is?

lets judge rookies as rookies and not expect them to play like a veterans the moment they arrive. i'll bet no gm in the league gives pouncey a b- for his rookie year as starting center. but i can't speak for them no.

Andy, I agree 100% with your draft grades...with the exception of Pouncey. I agree with zip that he's a solid player. He's mean, tough, played all Season, didn't make many errors (of course had his rookie learning curve, but that's natural), he's much better than a B-.

Only reason to lower his grade would be due to the fact they should have drafted another position of need, but that's not on the player, that's on the GM. Also, if we remember, they weren't ever intending on getting a QB, it was between Pouncey and Ingram, and 1 year has already shown that Ireland made the right choice between those 2 players.

I'd give that pick an A-.

Otherwise, right on with the rest. Gates proves Ireland can't evaluate speed talent, as he has no experience with it. All he can evaluate is size talent.

The way you build an organization is to hire a GM first then a coach, not the other way around like the Rams are doing. Ross needs to stay out of making personnel desicions other than to make general statements about what he would like to see. Ireland needs to be open to listen to what Fisher has to say about building a team and who to pick. Fisher and Ireland will need to work together to draft and sign free agents. Fisher will need to know that when he needs certain types of players he can trust Ireland to go get them without hesitation. Fisher coached both Steve McNair and Vince Young, I suspect he would like to have RG3.



Dear Mr. Salguero

Fire Jeff Ireland as GM and hire The Hasidic Jewish Rapper "Matisyahu" as GM ( Ross gets another celebrity).....Just think about it...no more acorns...Just Diamonds in the ruff....just what the Dolphins need.

Forword thinking

Soiled :)

When Vince Carter as a rookie went to the Raptors in Toronto to sign, they laid a nice spread out in the plane for him for the trip to TO. Filet Mignon, lobster, shrimp the size of a babies arm buuuttt Vince wasn't satisfied with that and he wasn't signing until they got him some chicken nuggets. So the planes were delayed and the limo went out and got poor Vince his chicken nuggets.
Now that is a negotiating stance. Maybe it is the chicken nuggets.

IrelandSucks, I also don't mind anyone having veto power over Ireland's picks. However, sounds like Fisher also doesn't want to be hampered by the desires of the Owner. And right now at least, the Owner and I are in complete agreement, nothing will help this football team succeed more than "trying" to pull in a franchise QB.

If Fisher comes in with his idea of securing a top rank defense, and playing the tiny margin of error type of football he's known for, then I'd rather pass and move on to someone willing to follow the Owner's preference for his ballclub.


It's not a definitive grade. I put the grades out there for discussion which me and you are having so I'm open to debate this.

You fail to realize Sproles was VERY effective for the Saints because Drew Brees and that offense and they had Jimmy Graham taking LBS and safties with him and everything was open as far as underneath passes and draws. He wouldn't have been anywhere near as effective in Miami.

Bush on the other hand became a feature back! He rusher for 1,086 yard and averaged 5.0 per carry! He also added 300 receiving yards and totaled 7 TDs with NO offensive firepower outside Marshall on the roster.

Bush was the focal point. Sproles was a second and third option that had the benefit of having a career year with an elite QB, arguably the best TE in football and plethora of talented WRs, plus plays called by Sean Payton.

I'm not diminishing Sproles season but Bush was an A pick up IMO!

daniel thomas was a big miss trading picks to move up. dallas trumped our pick with the back out of oklahoma. thomas isnt elusive and has an upright running style and will spend much of his career on the IR. cyde gates is half of ted ginn; straight line speed which is over-rated without the "moves". those are 2 huge early "misses".

Is there a TE to take later in the upcoming Draft anyone's seen? We need a TE (and an OC willing to use them out of the backfield).

Or will Clay be that guy? And is he ready to make that leap to full-time player?

Soiled is my hero

Fisher is not even an elite coach!!!...He has never won a Super Bowl!!!...Who does he think he is...Vince Lombardi!!!...Stick with Todd Bowles. He is a cheaper better solution!!!!

Sorry, meant to say an OC willing to use him off the line (like Miami right now loves to do with Fasano).

come on jeff join us


What's up man? I like Pouncey don't get me wrong and I agree he is going to be a a good player. He definitely has the capability to develop into an "A" player. For me to give out an A he would have had to been close to dominant. He was a rookie but a top 15 overall player and the best interior linemen in the draft. You make good point about his toughness and playing with a mean streak. His skill set is good too! I loved on that play in Dallas when he pulled left and was 15 yards up field blocking for Reggie Bush. Not too many Centers are capable of that. His athleticism is elite for the position. I was judging on what I saw but again always open to debate it.

But if you think he deserves an "A minus" I can respect that. You always give educated, well thought out post bro! After debating and thinking of how poor the offensive line would of been without him I am willing to go B plus! But not an "A" yet.

Let the man make an intelligent decision and get on with your lives...Jeez!


BTW excellent point on Ireland being able to evaluate Big, physical players but not fast, players.

I'm not sure but if Ireland was responsible for Jared Odrick that was a very good pick too. He was basically on his rookie year as well. And if Miami does get Fisher it will still be a good pick because without question Odrick can succeed at DT in a 4-3, IMO. He is another physical, tough, plays with a mean streak type player. It's ironic he resorts to the pee-wee dance but his play is encouraging as well. If Odrick was Ireland's pick I would go Grade: B (he was very good at times and dissappeared too but overall made a prescense)

If I paid a billion dollars for a team and they were on the verge of drafting a franchise QB...someone that would be the face of my team and be steering the next 5-10 years of my investment...I would want a say in who that person is....period.


I agree with you that nothing more will make Miami a winner then landing a franchise QB. But how do you think that will happen? Draft? FA (Flynn)? Trade?

Just curious how Miami makes that happen in your opinion.


Exactly......and I'm sure most would......


Like you said, this is all just discussion, I'm certainly not trying to overrule you or anything.

But, you brought up another concern for me. If Fisher brings in the 4-3, what do you think happens to Wake's talents? Do they get used to their full capacity? And does that move uncover some of his weaknesses right now (namely cover defense and holding the edge)?

I'm not wedded to the 3-4, but now that we have 3-4 personnel (though like you said Odrick and some others could pretty much transition without much drop-off) will that set the defense back for the next year or 2?

Just throwing it out there. Wake seems to me to be the perfect 3-4 OLB. Not sure how he's used in the 4-3.

I'm not anti-Fisher (yet), but that was a really good point NH

1st things first...Fire Ireland !!!!!!


I wrote the same thing on here a few weeks ago.....Jerry Jones had said that on NFL Network......

I know his credibility has gone down hill since JJ left.... But his the cowboys are loaded with talent....

They just need a. Coach to put them over the top......

Tell him to go take a sh*t in his hat. The Dolphins need to hire a young (Bowles), Hungry (bowles), smart (Bowles), tough (Bowles) winner (Bowles) that wants to be here and will take about 20 seconds to say yes. Hiring Bowles brings the least amount of change, keep the defensive staff intact (D was good this year and getting better) - sign Matt Flynn, draft another QB, hire a good OC and go from there. The payers know Bowles, like him and will play hard for him. See, it only took me 30 seconds to solve all the Dolphins problems. Screw Fisher.

Dear Mr. Salguero

Jeff Fisher demands :

I want a brand new house on an episode of Cribs
And a bathroom I can play Football in
And a king size tub big enough for ten plus me

I'll need a credit card that's got no limit
and a big black jet with a bedroom in it, gonna join the mile high club At thirty-seven thousand feet.

Stehen Ross : Been there, done that

More Fisher demands :

I want a new Helocopter full of old guitars
My own star on Hollywood Boulevard somewhere between Vince Lombardi and James Dean is fine for me.

I'm gonna trade this life for fortune and fame
I'd even cut my mustach hair and change my name

Ross, Fisher and Peterson :

And we'll hide out in the private rooms
With the latest NFL owners and today's who's who

They'll get you anything with that evil smile
Roger Goodell got a drug dealer on speed dial, well....Hey hey I were gonna be a superbowl rockstar

Soiled :)

AndyNJ - your arrogance is only surpassed by your ego. Miami Herald blogger talent evaluator...FAIL


Personally I think Wake would thrive in a 4-3. He is what about 6'3 255? He is built like 2 brick sht houses and is tough and relentless. I know this an example of only one player but Jevon Kearse was very under sized 6'4 250-255 tops and was not physical and hated to play the run. Fisher made the most of him as anyone could to try and make him at least an average to probably slightly below run defender. He was a pass rush specialist and he certainly thrived from day 1 at that. So at the very least I say Wake thrives as pass rusher even if he is not an all around player as a 4-3 DE. Just my opinion.

I don't think that would set the D back. Wake is not particularly good in space as a 3-4 OLB and he can't cover anyone. He has gotten better and better at setting the edge each season.

As a whole the D would be fine under a defensive minded guy like Fisher. They would still need another pass rusher in a 3-4 or 4-3 anyway. The biggest question mark would be the OLB. Can Burnett play weakside OLB? Dansby makes far too much to play OLB in a 4-3. He just wouldn't be around the ball enough to earn his pay. Plus, I think he is a player who can play in 4-3 without much drop off.

Starting Front 7

DE - Cam Wake
DT - Jared Odrick (versatile enough IMO to maybe play DE in a 4-3 as well. Think Will Smith Saints)
DT - Randy Starks
DE - Starter TBD

OLB - Kevin Burnett?
MLB - Karlos Dansby
OLB - Marvin Mitchell, big enough to play strong side and not every LB has to be a stud in a 4-3.


I respect everyone's opinions on here. I throw things out for discussion purposes and have no problem if anyone disagrees.

I clearly have never seen your name on here so you are just another sad poster with too much time on their hands who takes this blog way too personal. Come from behind your mask with your real name and stand behind your opinions. Don't hide behind a fake name.

don't worry about the trolls Andy

Ohio Dolfan,

I will only respond once and leave it at that.

"The hate of Jeff Ireland is just stupid!!
People just look for things to complain about!
Parcells is cause of all of this. This year was the best we have had in 5 years."

Posted by: TODD B'S CLIP BOARD | January 13, 2012 at 07:27 AM

Best season in the last 5? How did you come to that conclusion? Winning only 6 games AFTER having won 11, 7 & 7 the 3 prior years.

The defense of Ireland isn't getting stupid, it has been stupid. It's reported that Fisher likes Ireland. Yea, so much so that he doesn't wanna come here without assurances Ireland can't tell him what to do.

klndry, Where did you hear that story about Carter from?

And the rest of you we have no other choice but to wait for Fisher, I mean would you rather some unproven OC from some team, didnt we try that route with Cam Cameron, how did he work out?

Officially a typepad member now

This negotiation as laid out in the article seems kind of backwards. So Ross hasn't made Fisher an offer? If that's true why has it been widely reported that Ross will pay more than anybody else? And isn't more than anybody else is only relative to other offers. Someone please "deconfuse" me.

Now my name is blue :)

Why is Miami constantly prone to sports figures making "The Decision"? I think Fisher's really in negotiations with Jim Gray to make his announcement.

Fisher spotted late last night at Lombardos restaurant in St Louis by a friend of mine that works there. Not looking good

People, people....

Jeff Fisher is taking a page out of Lebron "King" James book.............

Ross want's to pack the stadium....Fisher is the Miami HC....it work for Micki Arison and the American Airline Arena why not for Ross and Sun Life Stadium..(suspense is the key)


The way I'd attack getting a QB is to mortgage the future on either Luck (who I think will almost be impossible to get) or RG3. Both will become franchise-caliber QBs IMO.

Like others, I see the risk in missing on that high of a QB pick. It sets your team back (especially giving up so much) for years to come. However, I believe we've been pulling our pudding this past decade plus, with nothing to show for anything we've done, including the Jake Long pick. I think now's the time to make a generation-defining move for a franchise QB.

Last year, people said wait until this year because the class will be better. Before that they made every other excuse in the book not to attempt to get a franchise QB.

I don't believe we can wait any longer. Playing these games is futile if you have no future at your QB position.

So that's how I'd do it. If the trade up scenario doesn't work, the only FA I'd be interested in would be Peyton Manning (though I'd need definitive proof of his health before I did that). At least he'd give us a chance for the next couple of years to be fully competitive, though I wouldn't be open to pay as much for him as I would moving up to get RG3.

give him whatever he wants ross and make him the new coach of the miami dolphins damn it!

DC...so your saying the ONLY franchise QB's in this years draft are Luck or RG3?

Did anyone watch the Brady 6 last night on NFL Network?

"There are acorns out there, you just need to find them"
Quote: Jeff Ireland

Chris 623.....

That why it's crap ....

These guys will believe whatever fits they're argument best.....regardless if it passes the common sense test.....

I believe the title of armando's blog was ROSS WON'T BE OUTBID.....

And I called armando on it.....I said NO WAY any buisnessman negotiates like that.....

Armando told me he was sticking by his sources....

Now he reports a 180....and says no offer had been made....

Well witch is it.....

Critical thinking gentlemen.....

infidel, are you sure it wasn't a Shula's Steak House?

Exactly Kris. These are polar opposites. Certainly, to have a bid one must make an offer. Unfortunately, Dolphins blogs are few and poor.

That would really be a dagger in the heart. he said he even had his shades on.

NH, those are the only 2 I'd be willing to mortgage the future on. Their are others I suspect might make good QBs in the league, but I wouldn't trade up for them (at least not in the 1st round).

Not sure why you'd want an "acorn" for the most important position on your team. Don't get me wrong. If the GM feels there's a QB he can get later who will be the next Brady/Manning/Rodgers, then more power to him and we'll see in time how smart that decision was. But our recent history shows those picks didn't pan out (Beck, Henne, White).

We're not a couple of players away with the QB we have to do anything in this league, that's the only reason I'd go for another position of need (or BPA) in the 1st-rd of this Draft. However, with a franchise QB, I think we could very well make the Playoffs in the next year or 2. That's why to me there really isn't any other position to speak about until that is settled.

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