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Whisenhunt confirms Cardinals are out of the mix for Manning

Ken Whisenhunt

Arizona Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt adjusts his headset on the sidelines during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the St. Louis Rams, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2011, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/L.G. Patterson)

AP

The Arizona Cardinals seemed like an excellent fit when Peyton Manning hit unrestricted free agency last week. They have a top-three NFL receiver, an up-and-coming running game and defense, and a retractable-roof stadium in one of the league’s weaker divisions.

Manning confirmed his interest in Arizona by paying a visit to Cardinals headquarters last weekend. But it didn’t work out.

“Regarding today’s developments and our quarterback position, acquiring Peyton Manning is no longer an option for us,” Whisenhunt confirmed, referring to Friday’s decision to pay Kevin Kolb’s $7 million roster bonus.

“Since the end of last season, we made it very clear that our plan was to head into 2012 with Kevin Kolb and John Skelton, let the process play out and -- like at every position -- go with the quarterback who gives us the best chance to win.

“Obviously something very unique and unexpected presented itself. We’ve said it many times: If there’s an opportunity to make our team better, we’ll explore it. ... In the end, it didn’t work out, but from our perspective it was very positive and we certainly don’t have any regrets about it.”