Big week ahead for Broncos with free agency looming

Denver Broncos

Von Miller and Peyton Manning (Photos: Getty Images)

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ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- This could be a very big week for the Broncos. Quarterback Peyton Manning could make his decision on whether he will retire. And linebacker Von Miller could get the franchise tag placed on him in the attempt to keep him with the team.

Manning almost certainly will not be with the Broncos next year and is expected to retire after helping the Broncos win the Super Bowl on Feb. 7. The team wants to move on with Brock Osweiler, who is a free agent.

The Denver Post reported over the weekend that Manning has made the decision to retire and he will make the announcement by the end of the week.

The Broncos were quick to deny the report, saying it was news to them. General Manager John Elway and the rest of the management team plans to keep talking with Manning about his future.

Manning needs to make a decision by March 9, when his contract for next season becomes fully guaranteed. But at $19 million, the Broncos will not bring him back for that much.

The Broncos said at last week's Scouting Combine in Indianapolis that they are willing to give him some space.

“It’s still in his court," Elway said. "Let him enjoy the win. It's only 2 1/2 weeks since we won. Want to give him that time. He deserves that."

Added coach Gary Kubiak: “There is no hurry here. We’ll go from there. Nothing has changed from that standpoint."

It appears the Broncos will not be able to reach a long-term deal with Miller by Tuesday's deadline to place the franchise tag on players.

The team is expected to keep Miller with the franchise tag. That would mean a one-year salary of about $14 million and keep Miller from going to other teams without the Broncos receiving compensation in the form of at least a first-round draft choice.

But placing the franchise tag on Miller could mean defensive end Malik Jackson would hit the open market.

Jackson has said he would give the Broncos a hometown discount, meaning he wants to stay, but it has to get done during this big week.

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