What's Caldwell ouster mean for Manning?

January, 17, 2012
1/17/12
3:14
PM ET

One of the few compelling reasons to stick with Jim Caldwell was to keep familiar people in place for Peyton Manning.

So as the Colts announce that Caldwell is out as coach of the Colts, the question right on the heels of who’s next is: What does it mean for Manning?

His $28 million bonus is due in early March and there is no getting around it -- they either have to pay it to keep him under contract or let him go before it’s due to avoid it.

Owner Jim Irsay has said if Manning is healthy and playing in the NFL, he’ll be doing so with the Colts.

But since then, Irsay has fired vice chairman Bill Polian and general manager Chris Polian and hired general manager Ryan Grigson.

It’s hard to imagine a scenario where Grigson and the Colts pass on Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck with the No. 1 overall pick in the draft.

Do they want a $28 million charge and Manning, coming off a third neck surgery in a short span, to be there with Luck?

Grigson will now be hiring a new coach who will be hiring a new coordinator (and presumably a quarterbacks coach) to work with the team’s signal-callers.

The Colts will remain at the forefront of NFL off-the-field news until we see that coach contribute to a decision on Manning.

Paul Kuharsky | email

ESPN Tennessee Titans reporter

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