Wes Welker intends to play in 2015

Contrary to an earlier report from FOX Sports, Wes Welker has told the Denver Post that he intends to play a 12th NFL season in 2015. The legendary slot wideout is scheduled to hit free agency after making $12M over two seasons in Denver.

Given Denver's caponomic situation, his concussion history, and the hiring of Gary Kubiak - in whose offense #3 wideouts tend not to excel - it would be a surprise to see Welker back with the Broncos in 2015.

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Report: 49ers pulled offer from Adam Gase over DC

Hey, remember that time when the 49ers were supposed to name Adam Gase their next head coach, but then went with Jim Tomsula instead, just hours later? According to a report from Tim Kawakami, the Niners pulled a fast one on Gase, first agreeing to his choice of assistants, but then trying to foist Tomsula on him as his DC.

Per Kawakami, Gase quickly nixed that idea, and the Niners promoted Tomsula.

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Mort: Expect announcement from Peyton Manning next week

According to Chris Mortensen, Peyton Manning is likely to announce sometime next week his decision to play in 2015. Mort had previously reported that a decision might have come as early as last week.

Manning reportedly met with John Elway on Thursday to discuss the possibility of returning for a fourth season in Denver. His $19M salary becomes fully guaranteed on March 9.

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Klis: John Elway met with Peyton Manning on Thursday

Peyton Manning, chaperoned by Joe Ellis, flew to Denver on Thursday and met with John Elway to discuss his near term future, but is not yet ready to announce a decision, according to Mike Klis. Manning's team physical will take place sometime between Feb 23 and Mar 5, and his $19M salary becomes fully guaranteed on Mar 9, the final day of the 2014 league year.

All signs have pointed to Manning returning in 2015, and Klis says Thursday's meeting is another positive indicator. Earlier in the week, Jason Cole reported that Elway & Co. weren't absolutely certain about wanting Peyton back.

Wes Welker reportedly considering retirement

Pending unrestricted free agent Wes Welker is seriously considering retirement after 12 seasons, according to Mike Garafolo. In 2014, Welker played only 27 snaps fewer than he did in 2013, but his production fell off signficantly - from 73 catches, 778 yards, and 10 touchdowns, to 49 catches, 464 yards, and two touchdowns.

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Report: John Elway not 100% on wanting Peyton Manning to return

Recent speculation from all corners suggests Peyton Manning wants to play in 2015. However, Jason Cole reports that the Broncos and John Elway aren't certain about wanting Manning back, especially if he's only going to play for one more year. As transcribed by FOX Sports:

At this point in his career, the Broncos could fail Peyton Manning for any reason, including the four neck surgeries that he has already had. In talking to sources close to the team, there's a big question here about whether the Broncos want to bring him back for one more year. They're going to have to feel very comfortable about this.

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Who are the Broncos’ likely cap casualties for 2015?

Every offseason, there's at least some caponomic housecleaning to be done. Most of the cuts and renegotiations are quite predictable, based upon a player's cap number and production, but there is the occasional bombshell. Before we look at 2015's likely cuts, let's look back at those from the first four years of John Elway's tenure.

In 2011, Denver's casualties were Daniel Graham, Jamal Williams, Justin Bannan, Correll Buckhalter, Renaldo Hill, and Nate Jones. A year later, Tim Tebow and Andre' Goodman were sent packing. 2013's departures included Elvis Dumervil, D.J. Williams, Willis McGahee, Joe Mays, and Caleb Hanie, while Champ Bailey rode off into the sunset last year.

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Deadline for Peyton Manning’s neck exam appears to be February 28

We've seen some unclear reports as to when Peyton Manning's neck examination must occur by, but Jeff Legwold has more of the details. Per Legwold, the annual exam must take place at least 10 days before the new league year starts, at 4pm ET on March 10.

That 10-day stipulation would actually appear to place the exam deadline on February 28 (Legwold says it's March 1), but if Chris Mortensen is correct (as he usually is in matters relating to Manning, as both are represented by CAA), Peyton figures to announce his return long before then.

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Mort: Peyton Manning likely to announce return this week

Peyton Manning may announce as early as this week that he's returning for the 2015 season, according to Chris Mortensen, who writes:

Manning has been fairly persuaded that all will work well between him and new head coach Gary Kubiak, who is ready and willing to fit his scheme to play to the quarterback's strengths.

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Mail: Should the Broncos rest Peyton Manning until crunch time?

Here's a fun idea for the upcoming season from longtime reader c_style:

What do you guys think about the idea of benching Peyton for 8 games of the season under these specific conditions:

1) Peyton comes in if Brock gets hurt
2) Peyton comes in if the playoffs are in doubt
3) Ideally Peyton comes in with 4 games left in the season to tune up for the playoffs

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