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NFL AM: Jeff Fisher Out As Rams Head Coach

The Rams finally make the obvious move; The Dolphins receive some great news about their QB.

Charlie Bernstein

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Rams Finally Move On From Fisher

After a long, sub-mediocre tenure as the head coach of the Rams franchise, head coach Jeff Fisher was finally fired on Monday afternoon.

Fisher took over as Rams head coach in 2012 and has a record of 31-45-1.  That record was obviously bad, but it only begins to tell the story of how inept this once proud franchise has become.

Under Fisher’s watch, the Rams were the worst offensive team in football and despite having high draft pick after high draft pick, he could never build a winner, or even come close to a postseason berth.

“It looked like a middle-school offense out there,” running back Todd Gurley told reporters following Sunday’s loss.

The Rams making this announcement was more or less putting Fisher, and more importantly their fans out of their misery.  With Sunday’s 42-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons, Fisher tied Dan Reeves for the most losses in NFL coaching history at 165.

“You can look at as glass half full or empty,” Fisher said on Dec. 5 about potentially passing Reeves, per ABC Los Angeles’ Ashley Brewer.

What exactly is the half full side, other than Fisher getting contract extension after contract extension?

Now Fisher won’t have the opportunity to officially become the “losingest” coach ever as he was let go just three days before the Rams host the Seattle Seahawks this Thursday.

Rams COO Kevin Demoff, whose father is also Fisher’s agent, suggested that they would keep the embattled head coach just a few weeks ago.

“Everybody will want to judge Jeff through the prism of just the record, but that’s totally unfair when you look at the set of circumstances he was handed this year,” Demoff told NFL Media’s Steve Wyche. “It was different than any team in the NFL.

“We moved halfway across the country, then had OTAs in Oxnard. Training camp was in Irvine, now we’re in Thousand Oaks. We moved coaches and players and families. To provide leadership and consistency, he’s done a model job.”

Demoff was certainly right about the consistency.  The Rams are about to embark upon their 10th consecutive losing season, more than any other NFL team currently.

The timing of this move is a bit puzzling, not only with a game coming up in three days but more importantly eight days ago Fisher was granted a contract extension.

That’s how dysfunctional this Rams franchise is.  They fired the head coach they extended in less than two weeks.

Tannehill Won’t Require Surgery

In need of some good news following yesterday’s injury to quarterback Ryan Tannehill, the Miami Dolphins received a Christmas miracle.

Many feared the worst yesterday as Tannehill’s knee seemed to hyperextend when Arizona Cardinals defensive lineman Calais Campbell crashed his helmet into it.

“We don’t have anything official now, but it doesn’t look good,” Dolphins head coach Adam Gase said about Tannehill’s injury in yesterday’s postgame press conference.  “To go out here, the shots he’s taken all season; he throws a good ball, it was a good play.  We felt like we were finding ways to move the ball against a good team and for him, to not see it coming, he couldn’t really defend himself.  It’s kind of a rough way to get knocked out of a game.

“Whatever it is, he’s tough.  He’ll find a way to be out there whenever that time comes.”

It turns out that the Dolphins received the good news that they were so pessimistic about as Tannehill didn’t tear any knee ligaments and suffered ACL and MCL sprains, which will not require any surgery.

“It’s better [news] than what we thought yesterday,” Gase said.

Although it’s good news, this doesn’t mean that Miami’s quarterback will be back in action in the next week or so.

“This is not going to be one game,” Gase said. “It’s going to be longer than that.”

Miami is in a Wildcard battle with the Denver Broncos, as they’re both tied with 8-5 records.  The Dolphins close the season with three division games, traveling to New York to play the Jets on Sunday, followed by a trip to Buffalo on Christmas eve.  Miami will close the season at home against the first-place New England Patriots.

Denver’s remaining schedule shows a matchup with the AFC’s No. 1 seed New England Patriots, followed by a trip to NFC West leader Kansas City and then they close the season with Oakland.  Even without Tannehill, Miami’s schedule looks imminently more winnable on paper than the defending Super Bowl champs.

Even if Tannehill were to miss the rest of the season, he would still be healthy enough to start 2017 and that is much better news than what many believed after yesterday’s game.

Charlie Bernstein is the managing football editor for Football Insiders and has covered the NFL for over a decade.  Charlie has hosted drive time radio for NBC and ESPN affiliates in different markets around the country, along with being an NFL correspondent for ESPN Radio and WFAN.  He has been featured on the NFL Network as well as Sirius/XM NFL Radio and has been published on Fox Sports, Sports Illustrated, ESPN as well as numerous other publications.

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