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Fisher boards helicopter and leaves Dolphins facility

Jeff Fisher has left the Dolphins building ... I feel like I'm covering Elvis.

Wearing a suit and walking next to owner Stephen Ross and a man that Herald reporter David J. Neal believes was Carl Peterson, Fisher boarded the helicopter that was waiting on the Dolphins practice field adjacent to the team's Davis facility minutes ago and cruised away.

[Update: Carl Peterson is definitely the man in the picture.]

I'd like to tell you he might come back. I'd like to tell you the pair maybe went for lunch.

But who the heck takes a helicopter to lunch?

[UPDATE: The Dolphins just announced that they have completed their interview with Fisher.]

I can definitely tell you Fisher is gone.

Meanwhile, the San Diego Chargers have announced that head coach Norv Turner and general manager A.J. Smith will return for the 2012 season.

“Bottom line, I believe these two men give us the best chance to get back to the playoffs,” Spanos said. “A.J. Smith is the best man to improve our roster, and Norv Turner is the best man to lead that roster on the field.

“Together, we have stability and experience that’s hard to find in the NFL. They’ve both been in this league a long time. I don’t think there is anything they haven’t seen or experienced. They’ve led us through some difficult situations.

“As we’ve seen throughout Norv’s tenure and particularly this past season, the players believe in him, respect him and play hard for him. When we went through that tough stretch, no one quit. The team kept playing hard, and that’s a tribute to Norv’s leadership and the respect the players have for him.

“Now we will take a hard look at everything, from player evaluation to coaching to the rash of injuries we’ve suffered in recent years. Injuries have killed us. And no one is ever perfect in this business. Player evaluation isn’t an exact science. We need to improve across the board and I’m going to make sure we do.

“We all have our quirks and faults, but I want A.J. and Norv on my side. They are the right men to help us win a championship.”

So why is that important on a Dolphins blog?

Are you kidding?

The fact is the potential San Diego opening would have been very attractive, and probably the most attractive opening to Jeff Fisher -- who today happens to be touring the Dolphins facility and being begged to take the Dolphins job.

The Chargers are a Southern California team and Fisher is from, wait for it, Southern California. The Chargers have franchise-caliber quarterback Phillip Rivers on the team and Fisher has been floating through handlers that he wants to coach a team with a fairly settled quarterback situation. The Chargers have a lot of talent. Fisher likes teams with lots of talent.

So the deletion of the Chargers from the list of potential suitor improves Miami's chances. No question.

The fact Fisher has left, meanwhile, is not a good sign. Fisher is reportedly scheduled to meet with Tampa Bay and St. Louis this week.

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