While the Miami Dolphins claw for their postseason lives sitting at 6-5 in a brutally competitive AFC, an NFL executive sees Jim Harbaugh landing in Miami IF the Miami Dolphins miss the playoffs, according to ESPN’s Mike Sando.

“I think Miami makes the playoffs, but if they miss the playoffs at 8-8, the Dolphins are my pick,” the executive said of Harbaugh’s potential departure from San Francisco this summer. “The owner [Stephen Ross] wanted to hire the guy before. I think that owner wants to make a statement.”

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Ross and the Dolphins flirted hard with Harbaugh in 2011 while remaining in bed with then head coach Tony Sparano, but Harbaugh chose San Francisco instead after four years at Stanford.

The 50-year-old remains under contract with the 49ers for one more season, but there’s widespread speculation that the two might be headed in different directions as soon as this summer with a contract extension nowhere in sight. For any potential trade to work out, a high draft pick might be the price, as CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora alluded to on Sunday.

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Expect the Harbaugh-to-Miami speculation to ramp up in the coming weeks with every additional loss. It could take 11 wins this season to guarantee a playoff berth. With games against the Patriots and Ravens looming along with three others against the Jets (twice) and Vikings, and a plethora of teams fighting for two wildcard spots, the odds are most definitely stacked against Miami’s “favorite football team.”

So if they do miss out on the postseason for the sixth consecutive year, is Harbaugh to Miami a feasible scenario or will he use them as leverage again as he has done in the past?

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The Dolphins continue their playoff push on the road tonight against the appalling New York Jets.