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Posted at 3:16 PM ET, 01/ 8/2011

Tony Sparano gets contract extension through '13 from Miami Dolphins

By Cindy Boren

The Miami Dolphins announced today that they have given Coach Tony Sparano a contract extension through 2013, wrapping up a chaotic and odd week in which owner Stephen Ross jetted to the West Coast to talk to Jim Harbaugh.

Ross said he regrets not telling Sparano of his plans to meet with Harbaugh, the Stanford coach who was hired by the San Francisco 49ers on Friday.

"Not until after I read the newspapers did I realize the anguish I'd put Tony through,'' Ross said. "I'm not familiar with going through this process, but I never thought it would be national news.

"I was a little naive. Looking back, I can tell you I shouldn't be talking to any coaches, seeking a replacement, until I've decided that I needed to make a change.''

Ross, who flew west with General Manager Jeff Ireland, said he did not offer Harbaugh the Dolphins' job.

"[Harbaugh] is an outstanding young man, and I think he'll be a great NFL head coach,'' Ross said. "But when you start hearing him speak, and talking about his plans and how he'd change a team, and when you listen to Tony, knowing the organization we have with the building blocks in place, sometimes you start to think the grass is greener.But that isn't necessarily the case.

"You don't just make change for the sake of change.''

All of which would seem to put Sparano in an awkward, with a capital AWK, spot.

"When we walk in this building, I tell my football team every single day that we don't place blame,'' Sparano said. "That isn't what we're trying to do. We're trying to solve problems. We don't place blame. We solve problems.

"I have the best job in the world, and I don't take it for granted one day.''

That's probably a good thing.

By Cindy Boren  | January 8, 2011; 3:16 PM ET
Categories:  NFL  
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