First it was Charley Casserly, then it was Adam Schefter. With all sorts of uncertainty surrounding the future of quarterback Peyton Manning, the Arizona Cardinals have suddenly become perhaps one of the best fits for the future Hall of Famer to land if he is released by the Indianapolis Colts.
He is due a $28 million bonus in March and there is much speculation that the Colts will cut ties with him because of the financial impact. Additionally, the team has a new GM, will have a new coach and is expected to draft Stanford QB Andrew Luck with the first overall pick in the draft. They could be ready to start anew with a young franchise QB, and considering the fact that no one even knows whether Peyton will ever play again after three neck surgeries, now seems as good a time as ever to move on.
That is where the Cardinals enter. They have uncertainty at QB and Larry Fitzgerald to throw to. That would be a big selling point.
However, Fitzgerald is not jumping on that bandwagon just yet. In an interview Sunday night on FOX10 Sports Night, he strongly downplayed the mere idea of Manning in Cardinal read. He said this:
"I highly doubt Peyton Manning is going to leave Indianapolis. He's, if not the best quarterback to ever play, one of the guys. I just don't think Indianapolis would put him out for everything he's done for that city and organization. He's done a marvelous job to represent the NFL and has grown the league tremendously. I don't think he's going to leave Indy."
Fitzgerald obviously isn't going to come out and say that he wants Manning here. It would be disrespectful to his teammates. However, while he does not think that Indy would do that to him, it would not surprise most. Fitz has been treated very well by the Cardinals organization, but his contract has never put his team in the same financial situation as Manning contract currently does.
With the deadline to make such a cut to avoid the bonus still almost two months away, the speculation will continue.