Manning's free agency tour makes stop in Arizona

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TEMPE, Ariz. — Peyton Manning arrived at the Arizona Cardinals’ headquarters Sunday, the second stop for the star free agent in his search for a new team.

Manning waved and nodded to photographers and reporters from the passenger side of a white SUV driven by coach Ken Whisenhunt as it passed through the facility’s security gate in the morning.

Larry Fitzgerald, considered a prime reason Manning might choose Arizona, arrived a few minutes ahead of Manning. General manager Rod Graves and offensive line coach Russ Grimm were already at the facility.

Team president Michael Bidwill arrived later.

“Get it done, Michael,” a fan yelled. “Come on, buddy.”

A smattering of fans filtered in as news got out that Manning was there.

Among the earliest to arrive was Jarred Light, an Indianapolis Colts fan who moved to the Phoenix area 11/2 years ago.

“I pretty much grew up around him,” he said. “When I was 12 is when he came to Indy. Now I’m 26, so pretty much ever since I’ve been interested in football he was my favorite everything. I’ve seen him a couple of times in Indy from living there so many years, and now I just wanted to come out here and see if he will come to the Cardinals.”

Manning arrived Saturday night from Denver, where he had met with Broncos officials. He was expected to go to his Florida home after his Cardinals visit.

It was unclear whether he still planned to meet with the Dolphins.

Manning reportedly wants to make a decision in the next few days. Time is of the essence for the Cardinals, who are scheduled to pay quarterback Kevin Kolb
$7 million if he is on the roster Thursday.

Manning, a four-time MVP, was released by the Colts as the lead move in the team’s massive restructuring of its roster.

With Manning out the entire season while undergoing a series of neck surgeries, Indianapolis had the worst record in the NFL and is expected to select quarterback Andrew Luck with the No. 1 pick in the draft.

SALARY CAP: The NFL salary cap for 2012 is $120.6 million, barely above last year’s figure.

The league informed the 32 teams Sunday that the cap has gone up by $225,000. All teams must be under the cap by Tuesday, when free agency begins.

If a club has salary cap room remaining at the end of the season, it can carry it over to 2013 as long as it notifies the NFL by the day before the 2012 season ends.


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