The Facts: Following up on the ongoing story. ... According to ESPN's Chris Mortensen, Manning met between five and six hours hours late today with Dolphins HC Joe Philbin and other staff members in Indianapolis.
Diehards Line:According to NFL.com, the plan was to hold a very football-centric meeting, a team source said Monday. The Dolphins have been very tight-lipped through this entire process with much of the information about Manning's plans or intentions coming from his camp or other organizations also courting the prized free agent. It's worth noting that owner Stephen Ross had hoped to make an in-person pitch to Manning, but the free-agent QB was clearly more interested talking Xs and Os. As NFL.com pointed out earlier today, Ross and GM Jeff Ireland don't have the best track records when it comes to wooing potential coaches or free agents, the failed pursuits of coaches Jim Harbaugh and Jeff Fisher being prime examples. Ireland's strong suit as a general manager has been his scouting ability and salary cap management. Philbin, meanwhile, is a very cerebral, calming football mind, unlikely to scare Manning away. Whether he was able to show Manning that his team and his offense will allow him to flourish in a manner suitable to the QB's liking remains to be seen. Stay tuned. A similar meeting with Titans HC Mike Munchak is expected next.