[Update: The AFC East's Jets, Patriots and Bills -- all favorites today -- all lost, repositioning victorious Miami as a contender for a playoff spot as division champion, not just for a wild-card berth. The Dolphins now are tied with New England for second in the division and only one back of the Jets, whom Miami plays in the regular-season finale. Today's not-so-good news: The Colts and Ravens both won to stay head of the Dolphs in the wild-card race. On the heel of a 1-15 season ... are we really even having this conversation!?]
Was it a particularly impressive win? Nah. Miami barely toughed out a narrow W against an inferior opponent. Lots of penalties, too. Still, it was impressive in other ways. Miami faced a letdown after a very emotional loss to a division rival. Miami faced a road game against an opponent with nothing to play for but its spoiler role.
And yet, most importantly, the Dolphins survived to improve to 7-5 and keep its playoff hopes very much breathing.
Comments on today's game welcomed here.
Andre Goodman interception on last-minute bomb seals victory for Miami!
Dolphins punting at 2-minute warning. Man, penalties have really hurt Miami today.
Surprised Rams didn't go for it there. Perfect circumstance now for Miami to get a few firsts, run out the clock and take a victory knee.
Dan Carpenter with another trey, this from 42, and it's 16-12, Fish. The kid's NFL rookie-record 11th straight FG. Ricky Williams hobbles off; doesn't appear serious. Can the Dolphins hold on!?
Renaldo Hill with a giant interception on a really bad decision by Marc Bulger. Huge takeaway. Feels like a game-saver.
Rams settle for FG, draw witin 13-12 with 12 minutes left. Smart blitz by Will Allen forced third down misfire, one of the few times Miami's rush has bothered Marc Bulger.
Smart red flag by Tony Sparano. Doubt he'll win it, but good gamble because Rams first down was so big.
Miami nursing an anxious lead as game turns to fourth Q. result teetering. Are we confident?
Dolphs give it right back on David Martin fumble after catch, close to red zone. Hey fellas, anybody wanna win this game?
Interception by Miami's Akin Ayodele a huge takeaway that snuffs a threatening Rams drive. Could prove to be be a game-saver.
Tenth straight FG for Carpenter ties an NFL rookie record.
Money Carpenter adds another FG, this from 47, to grow Miami's lead to 13-9. Still a nervous lead. Davone Bess having a nice game. Two Wildcat plays in that series, one with Chad Pennington on the sideline, a new wrinkle.
Dolphs 3-and-out to start 2H. Wildcat offensive variation a non-factor so far. Might be time to dust it off.
Dan (Money) Carpenter 38-yard FG in waning seconds gives Miami a 10-9 halftime lead, after a hold by RG Ike Ndukwe negates a Ricky Williams TD run and then Davone Bess blows an end-zone catch. Penalties have hurt a bit today. (I picked Miami, 27-23. Liking my pick).
Rams regain lead 9-7 on a third FG with inside of two minutes left in first half.
Bad drop by Ted Ginn forces a punt. Junior looked like a DB batting down a pass instead of a receiver.
Order restored. Dolphins seize first lead on 3-yard, second-effort scoring run by Ronnie Brown. Big third-down catch by Davone Bess. Doesn't it seem like more and more NFL players are sporting long dreadlocks?
Game turns to 2nd Q with Dolphins driving promisingly. Against this defense, Brown/Williams/Cobbs should combine for 150 yards rushing. That's the theory, anyway.
Lous add 50-yard FG for 6-0 lead late in first Q. Rams had been outscored 99-6 in first half in previous three games. StL looking more like the playoff-chasing team and Dolphins like the bums. Very early still, of course.
Now guard Justin Smiley out injured for Miami, and Chris Long beats Jake Long for a QB hurry. Ominous start for Dolphins.
Rams chip in short FG on opening series marked by two pass interference penalties against Dolphin cornerback Joey Thomas. Joey Thomas!? Oy! Rams not used to leads. That probably explains the impromptu conga line inside the stadium.
Game on! Gus Johnson and Steve Tasker on the call for CBS, which tells where this game rates.
The Rams are Detroit's closest challenger for NFL's Worst Team dishonors, and yet nothing in this league is assured, and I have a hunch St. Louis, healthier than it's been in a while, will give Miami a tough fight this afternoon. See a close Dolphins win. How about y'all?
For sure Miami needs this one desperately to stay in the playoff chase. Finishing 3-2 from here for 9-7 almost certainly won't get a wild-card. Even 4-1 for 10-6 might not. So call this a must-win in all but a literal sense.
Comments welcome here before, during our live-blog and of course after today's game.