Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Miami Dolphins are officially out of the Peyton Manning sweepstakes, according to NFL Network’s Jeff Darlington.
Manning has reportedly cut his teams down to Tennessee, Denver, and Arizona, according to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen.
Miami is nowhere to be found on that list and Manning personally told the Dolphins he’s no longer considering signing with them, Darlington reported.
The Dolphins now move on to plan B in former Green Bay Packers quarterback Matt Flynn. The former seventh-round pick has become the hottest quarterback name in free agency not named Peyton Manning. But, Miami has company in pursuing Flynn.
Flynn reportedly has been in Seattle being wooed by Pete Carroll and the Seattle Seahawks before flying to Miami to visit the Dolphins starting Saturday. Miami has one leg up in the battle for Flynn, new Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin.
Flynn played in Philbin’s offense for the last four seasons and when the former LSU quarterback got a chance to play in Green Bay, he played lights out and was extremely efficient throwing the football for the Packers.
Still, according to CBS4 news partner the Miami Herald, an associate of Flynn said it’s not out of the realm of possibilities for Seattle to sign Flynn before he can ever get to Miami. But, Flynn is said to have interest in Miami and would fit perfectly in Philbin’s West Coast Offense.
The Dolphins are believed to have somewhere in the neighborhood of $5-$6 million in cap space available, meaning they will have to clear additional room to bring Flynn into the fold. If the remaining cap space is used for Flynn, that means the Dolphins are out of the pursuit of free agent right tackle Eric Winston.
The Dolphins signed veteran guard Artis Hicks Tuesady to a one year, $2 million deal and he could compete for a job at right tackle or right guard and will at the very least give the Dolphins some quality depth on the offensive line.
So far in free agency, the Dolphins have signed Hicks, cornerback Richard Marshall, and re-signed nose tackle Paul Soliai.