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Brock Osweiler May Bolt From Denver and Other NFL News

Now that Peyton Manning has retired from the NFL, the Denver Broncos have to do what they can to secure the services of Brock Osweiler. The free-agent-to-be was offered a three year deal with $45 million according to sources, but the part-time starter this past season may still test the free agent market.

Losing Osweiler could leave a huge hole in the offense for the reigning Super Bowl champions. It would seem $45 million is a lot to invest on a player with only a handful of starts under his belt. It also could mean teams like Cleveland and San Francisco – franchises with the need for a starting quarterback – could be salivating at the chance to sign Denver’s biggest free agent at the current time.

Team President and GM, John Elway, has to be a bit nervous as free agency begins later this week.

As Scotty Payne of milehighreport.com wrote, “The teams that have been rumored to have varying interest in Osweiler are the New York Jets, Houston Texans, Los Angeles Rams, and the Cleveland Browns. All four of those teams have the cap space to outbid the Broncos. The one thing that the Broncos have that those four teams do not is a Super Bowl caliber team.”

Osweiler is not the only free agent Elway must work out a new deal with. Malik Jackson, the team’s starting defensive end, figures to get plenty of attention in free agency. Oakland, Jacksonville and Chicago should all be making an offer to Jackson once teams can begin to negotiate with them and their agents.

Manning’s retirement comes as no surprise as the team is ready to move on from the Hall of Fame signal caller and his hefty contract.

SMITH TO ILLINOIS

Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Lovie Smith appears to have found a job in coaching again.

A report on Fox Sports has Smith being named the new head coach at the University of Illinois.

Bruce Feldman wrote the story and how the hiring would be Smith’s return to the college game after being away for an extended period of time.

Though Smith has been away from college football for over two decades, there are some things that would add up to him being the guy. The connection is Whitman played for Ron Turner at Illinois and is close to his old coach. Turner, now the FIU head coach, was an assistant on Smith’s Chicago Bears staff for several years.

Smith’s last stint as a college coach was 21 years ago when he was the defensive backs coach at Ohio State. A source told Fox Sports that Smith might be tempted by the job because he could also bring two of his sons who were on his staff in Tampa Bay with him.

Smith is no stranger to the state of Illinois as he served as the head coach of the Chicago Bears and took the team to the Super Bowl in 2006.

His career record in the NFL is 89-87.

WHITE CLAIMS SHANAHAN COST FALCONS WINS

Now that he has been released by the Atlanta Falcons, wide receiver Roddy White had a few parting shots at his former offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan. White claimed Shanahan’s play calling cost the team wins in 2015.

White was released last week after a controversial season for the team’s all-time leading receiver.

“What [Shanahan] expected from me and what I expected from him was totally different,” White said on ESPN.com. “I expected to play a bigger role in the offense, and that’s what I wanted to do. But he didn’t have that in his desires. He had other people that he wanted to play my role, so he wanted me to be out of the [offense]. That was the whole thing. And it is what it is. I can’t do nothing about it. I can’t change his way of thinking or anything like that. I can just do what I did, which was just handle my business and get myself prepared for this moment.”

White could be in line to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers where their new head coach, Dirk Koetter, was the offensive coordinator in Atlanta before being replaced by Shanahan.

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