Jeff Darlington of the NFL Network reports Manning personally called the Dolphins Thursday to let them know he will not take his talents to South Beach. This is no surprise, as Miami has been falling out of the running for at least a week.
That leaves the Denver Broncos, Tennessee Titans and Arizona Cardinals as the three remaining suitors for Manning. The Dolphins have now turned their attention to Plan B, which is former Green Bay Packers backup quarterback Matt Flynn. Miami will meet with Flynn after he finishes his visit with the Seattle Seahawks.
Without Manning, Dolphins owner Stephen Ross failed to make the splash this offseason that he anticipated. Miami tried and failed to land veteran coach Jeff Fisher. Manning is the second big name to turn down the organization in recent months.
Flynn has played well in two career starts, but he's not a big enough commodity to excite Dolphins fans and put butts back in the seats at Sun Life Stadium. Drafting a quarterback, such as Ryan Tannehill also is an option, in addition to sticking with last year’s starter in Matt Moore.
The bottom line is there's no quick fixes for Miami. Manning provided the rare opportunity to instantly change the fortune of the franchise with one player. But the Dolphins will have to gradually rebuild their team by making smart moves in the draft and free agency.