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There is no known deadline for Manning's decision, but the process has been exhaustive since he was released March 7 by the Colts. Before Friday's visit with Denver, it was Manning who insisted upon working out for the teams, endorsing the integrity of the process.
Manning first visited the Broncos March 9, followed by a visit to the Cardinals, but there were other unreported developments last weekend, such as the Seattle Seahawks parking a jet at an airport in the Denver area in a failed attempt to visit with the quarterback, according to sources.
While contract parameters have been discussed, extensive negotiations involving contract language also must be completed. Sources say that Manning will provide any team that signs him with appropriate financial protection in the event he suffers a setback related to his prior neck injuries.
While contract parameters have been discussed, extensive negotiations involving contract language also must be completed. Sources say that Manning will provide any team that signs him with appropriate financial protection in the event he suffers a setback related to his prior neck injuries.Rock Cartwright, the former Raiders and Redskins running back and special teams standout who signed a one-year contract with the 49ers on Friday, still believes Alex Smith will be the 49ers' starting quarterback -- or at least he's speaking as if that's the case. "I think Alex is a great guy. I think we've got a great quarterback in Alex," Cartwright said, according to The Associated Press. "Whoever is there, we'll be there to support him. Right now Alex is the guy." The 49ers have been working to re-sign Smith, the No. 1 overall draft pick in 2005 who made a comeback in 2011 under first-year coach and former NFL QB Harbaugh, and Smith has acknowledged he was happy with their three-year offer. Manning and Smith both are represented by agent Tom Condon and CAA Sports. Neither tight end Vernon Davis nor running back Frank Gore had been told by the 49ers they were pursuing Manning. Both have publicly supported Smith during his up-and-down seven-year tenure with the franchise. When asked if Smith is still the man, Gore said, "I think he is." The NFC West champion 49ers on Monday signed wide receiver Randy Moss after he spent a year out of football, hoping he will be the dynamic wideout and deep threat of his past to open up the field. The addition of Cartwright, who played the past two seasons with the Oakland Raiders, should help fill a void left after Blake Costanzo signed a two-year contract with the Chicago Bears on Tuesday. "Rock has been a standout special teams contributor, who has also shown versatility at the running back position," 49ers general manager Trent Baalke said. "He has all of the intangibles that we look for in a 49er." Chris Mortensen is a senior NFL analyst for ESPN. Adam Schefter is ESPN's NFL Insider. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.