ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Rick Dennison said Tuesday the team is in "no rush" to get a decision from quarterback Peyton Manning on whether he'll play in 2015, and the team's offense will be built around the personnel on hand.
Dennison, like the team's other assistant coaches, is still getting moved into his new office at the Broncos' suburban Denver complex and has begun the process of examining the team's personnel.
The biggest question, at least at the moment, surrounding the Broncos' offensive group is whether Manning will return. Manning had said on Christmas Eve he fully intended to return for 2015 "if the Broncos will have me," but he was noncommittal following the team's 24-13 loss to the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC divisional playoffs.
Asked Tuesday if he would be unable to build a playbook until Manning had formally made his announcement, Dennison said that was not the case.
"I don't think so, we're going to go see what we do best, see what our team ends up with, there's certainly no rush," Dennison said. "He deserves to take his time and figure out what he wants to do because he's a phenomenal player."
Multiple team sources said Tuesday that the Broncos were aware Manning was scheduled to work out with trainer Mackie Shilstone in New Orleans this week, but Manning has yet to meet with Broncos executive vice president of football operations/general manager John Elway, team CEO Joe Ellis and coach Gary Kubiak.
In Phoenix, two days before the Super Bowl, Manning said he wanted to look Elway, Ellis and Kubiak "in the eye" when they discussed his playing future as well as the team's offense. Manning is expected to speak to all of those involved before Elway and Kubiak leave for the NFL scouting combine.
Dennison was asked if he is proceeding as if Manning will return and he said, "I'm not proceeding with anything. I'm letting him take his time; he deserves that."
Dennison, who coached at the Pro Bowl as part of the Baltimore Ravens' staff, has contacted each of the Broncos' players on offense, including Manning, since he accepted the job last month. The Broncos' coaches were given some time off before the football staff returned to work Monday.
"I just said hello to him, just like I said hello to everybody on the offense, on our roster," Dennison said. "I called them up and said hello, introduced myself and told them if they were around come in and say hi, no football, no nothing, just say hi. I look forward to working with whoever's under the roof."
The only deadlines, at least in terms of Manning's contract, involved in the decision are the fact his salary ($19 million) is guaranteed if Manning is on the roster on March 9. The new league year, including the opening of free agency, begins March 10.
Manning must also have a checkup on his surgically repaired neck at least 10 days before the start of the new league year. The Broncos have said internally that it's not the vertebrae that were fused in the surgery that would be a concern, but rather the areas just above and just below the fusion, since that is where any degenerative issues could occur.
Those two deadlines would give the Broncos the ability to release Manning if he was not cleared to play in 2015 because of his neck. But on the day the team announced it had parted ways with John Fox as its coach, Elway was asked if he saw Manning as part of the team moving forward, and he said, "I do."
In Phoenix, Manning said of his impending checkup: "Don't see it being that significant, I feel pretty confident I would pass that physical, that my neck is in good shape. I'd like to avoid a crowd standing outside the MRI room, if possible. I've felt secure about that the past three years and feel the same about that."