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3-16-12: Arizona Cardinals Bird Droppings - Decision Day

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Time for more links, as we wait for Manning to make his decision on where he will go, and if the Cardinals will pay Kevin Kolb his seven million dollar bonus that he needs to get to stay on the roster. We also found out Levi Brown will also be back with the Cardinals.

Arizona Cardinals News:

Decision time: Will Kevin Kolb stay on the Cardinals' roster? It hinges on Peyton Manning
At 1 p.m. Friday, quarterback Kevin Kolb will either be $7 million richer or an ex-Cardinals quarterback. Peyton Manning will play a large role in determining Kolb's status. And if you think that doesn't make any sense, welcome to the wacky world of the NFL off-season, which causes more head-scratching than lice. When Kolb signed his contract in July, this $7 million payment appeared almost guaranteed. The Cardinals traded cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a second-round draft pick for Kolb and then signed Kolb to a five-year deal. It appeared inconceivable that the team would release him by March 17, avoiding a $7 million roster bonus. But Manning became a free agent last week when he was released by the Colts. The Cardinals, along with at least three other teams, are awaiting Manning to pick a new employer.

Cardinals close to re-signing OT Levi Brown
The Cardinals are close to re-signing left tackle Levi Brown, a starter for most of his five seasons with the club, according to an NFL source. The deal could be announced Friday. Terms were not available.

Word From the Birds Blog - The calm before the storm?
Friday is a big day for the Cardinals, after a relatively quiet Thursday. By tomorrow, the Cardinals, as has been noted a few places, should have tackle Levi Brown re-signed and back on the roster as they try to stabilize the offensive line. Meanwhile, the Peyton Manning watch builds to a crescendo — at least in Arizona — with the 1 p.m. Friday deadline to exercise Kevin Kolb’s roster bonus.

Word From the Birds Blog - With Marshall gone, Butler eyes a chance
Next to the now-empty locker where Richard Marshall was once housed — his name plate was already gone Thursday morning — Crezdon Butler sat, having finished another rehab workout, knowing that he may have lost a neighbor but gained an opportunity. "I would say that," Butler said. "I’m just trying to get back 100 percent." blogs - Kent Somers - So these four Cardinals are at the park...
So I'm leaving the Cardinals facility today for lunch when I spot four men playing playing football at the Tempe park next door. Three of the men are large, so my keen reporting skills tell me they might be Cardinals players. I pull into the parking lot and see quarterback John Skelton and his brother Steve, a tight end, tight end Rob Housler and receiver Jaymar Johnson.

New Cardinal Adam Snyder impressed with roster, nervous about meeting new teammates -
Adam Snyder left behind a team that won the NFC West and reached the NFC Championship game for one that needed a 7- 2 finish just to finish 8-8. So, one might wonder, why jump from the San Francisco 49ers to the Arizona Cardinals? "The football team is great," Snyder told Arizona Sports 620's Doug and Wolf. "This team is only on the rise, and if you look at the roster, from top to bottom, it's elite talent." Snyder signed a a five-year contract with the Cardinals after spending his previous seven seasons by the bay, and looks to bring a hard working mentality to his new team.

Report: Cardinals bringing Levi Brown back -
It looks like Levi Brown isn't going anywhere, after all. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Cardinals and offensive tackle Levi Brown agreed to terms on a five-year contract, bringing the inconsistent and somewhat controversial former first round pick back into the fold.

Contract won't be issue in pursuit of Peyton Manning -
Peyton Manning is going to get paid. Very well. The top free agent on the market, Manning has narrowed his list down to four teams, according to ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter, as the Cardinals, Broncos, Titans and Dolphins are still in the mix for the QB's services. "I don't see other meetings at this point, I don't see another team jumping in at this point," Schefter told Mike and Mike on Arizona Sports 620. Schefter believes Manning's decision will come "sooner rather than later," but that when he picks a team the contract negotiations will be fairly painless.

Chat wrap: Ready for dominoes to fall - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Mackay from Utah thinks the Cardinals will "lose out big-time" in free agency if they fail to sign Peyton Manning. He thinks they'll be worse off given the players they have lost.

Peyton Manning or not, Cardinals have decisions to make -
Let's assume for a second Peyton Manning chooses to go to a team that is not the Cardinals. Sorry. Unfortunately for Arizona, that is a distinct possibility, though there is little reason to think it's a certainty at this point. Without Manning on board, you'd think the Cardinals would have to make do with some combination of Kevin Kolb, John Skelton and Richard Bartel, as those are the QBs currently on the roster. But with the team owing Kolb a $7 million roster bonus this weekend, the team would appear to need a decision from Manning soon, one way or another. Maybe not.

Peyton Manning free agency stretches into 2nd week -
Your move, Peyton. This year's top NFL free agent heard four teams' pitches in person. Owners squired him around the country on private jets. Politicians have weighed in. Fans are growing restless. Now Peyton Manning needs to decide what happens next.

Peyton Manning does not appreciate your billboard, will chop it down if he has to | Off the Bench
They’ve done it in Miami, Denver, Nashville and Arizona. But Peyton Manning is not a fan of people trying to get him to come to their city by erecting billboards in his honor. In fact, Manning’s marketing firm, IMG, has sent a cease and desist letter to the folks who put up this billboard in Arizona. He wants it taken down. Business Insider:

2012 free agency: Notes from third day - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Lots of little things to cover while waiting for Peyton Manning to choose his next employer:

Where NFC West stands in free agency - NFC West Blog - ESPN
A look around the NFC West on the third day of NFL free agency:

Arizona Sports News:

Shorthanded Suns pull out a road victory vs. Clippers
The Suns squeaked out a 91-87 victory over the Clippers on the road despite resting Steve Nash and Grant Hill in the middle of a stretch of 3 games in 3 days. The Suns are now one game below .500 at 21-22.

Flames power past Coyotes in Calgary
The Coyotes couldn't get a win streak going, losing to the Flames 4-1 one night after a big win vs. the Canucks.

NFL News:

Mario Williams Is A $100 Million Man -
The Buffalo Bills have reportedly given Mario Wililams a six-year contract that is worth up to $100 million. Monster numbers for the top defensive player in free agency. The Bills have significantly improved their pass rush and their defense as a whole with this move.

Peyton Manning Offered Contract 'For Life' By Tennesse Titans' Bud Adams -
The Tennessee Titans have been in heavy pursuit of free agent quarterback Peyton Manning, hosting him for a visit on Wednesday. Titans owner Bud Adams has made it known that he wants Peyton Manning on the Titans by any means necessary, even reportedly offering Manning a contract "for life."

Dolphins Chances Of Landing Peyton Manning Are 'Dwindling' -
Peyton Manning's free agency tour has included stops in Denver and Arizona, along with a meeting with Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin and members of the Titans front office. It's unclear if there's a leader for the former Colts quarterback's services, but several reports indicate that if the Dolphins aren't already out of the race, then their chances of landing Manning are small and getting smaller.

VIDEO: Do We Know If Peyton Manning Can Throw Yet? - From Our Editors -
As of now, it looks like Peyton Manning's decision will come down to one of four teams: Titans, Broncos, Dolphins and Cardinals. Each of these teams has at some point been considered the leader in the clubhouse. In SB Nation's latest on YouTube, Bomani Jones asks a simple question: Can he throw?

San Diego Chargers Sign Eddie Royal To 3-Year Deal -
The San Diego Chargers have added a wide receiver to help fill the hole left by Vincent Jackson's departure to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, by signing former Denver Broncos wide receiver Eddie Royal to a three-year contract, the team announced Thursday.

Free Agent Matt Flynn Plans Visit With Miami Dolphins -
Free agent quarterback Matt Flynn isn't getting quite as much attention on the open market as some thought he would. Flynn, the former Green Bay Packers QB, has visited the Seattle Seahawks. According to ESPN, Flynn's next stop will be Miami, where the Dolphins hopes of landing Peyton Manning are "dwindling."

Holmgren: Redskins had an in with Rams - NFC West Blog - ESPN
The St. Louis Rams commanded a premium from the Washington Redskins for the second pick in the 2012. I haven't seen anyone, anywhere suggest the Rams offered the pick at a discount. They secured first-round picks in 2012, 2013 and 2014, plus a second-rounder this year. But to hear Cleveland Browns president Mike Holmgren tell it, his team was offering at least as much. The problem for Cleveland, Holmgren suggested to Browns season-ticket holders, was the close relationship between the Rams' and Redskins' brass.

Cracking the code on Calvin Johnson’s deal | ProFootballTalk
On Wednesday, the Lions extended the contract of receiver Calvin Johnson. Initially reported as a seven-year, $132 million deal, this characterization overlooked the reality that: (1) it’s an eight-year deal; and (2) Johnson already was due to earn $18.5 million in 2012. Also, the report that Johnson will receive $60 million in guaranteed money is, as reports regarding guaranteed money usually are, inflated. We heard last night that the numbers may have been grossly inflated. Here’s the real story on the deal.

Contract "for life" would require two contracts, league approval | ProFootballTalk
Titans owner Bud Adams has offered Peyton Manning a contract "for life." As crazy as it sounds in the salary-cap era, it can happen.