NFL Nation: Chade Henne

According to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen and Adam Schefter, the Kansas City Chiefs are likely out of the running for Peyton Manning.

Despite the team’s public announcement that it was interested in Manning, it appears nothing has developed. Where does that leave the Chiefs' quarterback situation heading into 2012?

Right where it was prior to Manning becoming a free agent: It is Matt Cassel’s job until further notice.

Kansas City general manager Scott Pioli said at the combine that the starting quarterback job wasn’t necessarily open. It is Cassel’s job, but there will be competition.

Like any team looking at Manning, the Chiefs were interested in a rare opportunity to pursue a superstar. That is no knock on Cassel. The reality is, 32 teams would prefer Manning to Cassel. That’s just the way it is.

Still, with Manning apparently out of the picture, expect the Chiefs to continue to look at quarterbacks this offseason, albeit on a lesser scale. Candidates include Kyle Orton, Jason Campbell and Chad Henne. If the Chiefs are looking for a pure backup for Cassel, Brady Quinn could be an option.

I could also see the Chiefs looking at Branden Weeden or Kirk Cousins if they are available when the Chiefs pick in the second round.

The Chiefs will add a quarterback this offseason. The only question is whether Cassel will be truly pushed or not. Of course, had the Manning pursuit worked out, Cassel might have been pushed right out of Kansas City.

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