Time really is money. Nobody knows that better than Elvis Dumervil and the Denver Broncos.
Dumervil found himself out of a job and the Broncos were without their best defensive end Friday afternoon after they reached an agreement on a new contract, but saw it all come undone when tardy filing of the paperwork forced Denver to release him.
A person familiar with the negotiations gave The Associated Press details about the confusion. The person did not want to be identified because the negotiations were not public.
According to that person, the day played out like this:
• At 1:25 p.m. MT, Dumervil agreed to take a $4 million pay cut to remain with the AFC West champions for 2013.
• The paperwork was ready to be signed and sent to the league. But with the clock ticking on a 1:59 p.m. deadline, the Broncos were not seeing any sign of the signed copy on their fax machine.
• With no signed contract in hand as 1:59 approached, the Broncos were forced to cut Dumervil, because once the 1:59 deadline passed, they were on the hook for the $12 million they owed him in the original contract.
• The team received the signed contract via fax at 2:06 p.m. That was seven minutes past the deadline and about 15 minutes later than they needed to receive it so they could review it and send it to the league.
Broncos front office chief John Elway said the team delivered its final contract proposal to Dumervil at 11 a.m. and set a 1 p.m. deadline for a decision. Elway said Dumervil accepted the contract at around 1:25 and "although we expressed our concern regarding the time constraints, we were assured that the signed documents would be submitted to us before the league's waiver deadline."
"We did not receive the documents from Elvis by the league's deadline and were forced to release him shortly before 2 p.m. MDT," Elway said.
Dumervil's agent, Marty Magid, did not return messages left by AP via text and voicemail.
Dumervil is now a free agent. Though the parties had agreed on a deal, the odds of Dumervil returning to Denver are hampered because cutting him could leave them with a salary cap hit of up to nearly $5 million.
Dumervil was second on the team last year with 11 sacks, but Elway asked him to take a pay cut because the $12 million was well over the market price, even for top pass rushers this year.
Packers WR Jennings joining Vikings
Greg Jennings has agreed to terms with the Minnesota Vikings, becoming the latest Green Bay Packer to head across the border and join their bitter NFC North rivals.
Jennings made his decision on Friday, giving the Vikings the No. 1 receiver they so desperately needed after trading Percy Harvin to Seattle.
ESPN first reported the five-year deal. Whenever the Vikings have really needed to fill a big hole, they've gone to Green Bay to do it more often than not.
Jennings joins safety Darren Sharper, kicker Ryan Longwell and, of course, quarterback Brett Favre as high-profile Packers to defect to Minnesota.
Like all the rest of them, Jennings will be looking to prove that his best days are not behind him.
The 29-year-old Jennings played in only eight games for the Packers in 2012, plus two in the playoffs, because of a torn lower abdominal muscle and finished with a career-low 366 yards receiving with an average of 10.2 yards per catch, also his worst NFL total.
Cardinals release QB Kolb
The Arizona Cardinals released Kevin Kolb, ending the quarterback's two injury-filled seasons with the team.
The team's move on Friday came just ahead of the deadline for paying Kolb a $2 million roster bonus. The team paid Kolb some $20 million over two seasons after acquiring him in a trade that sent a second-round draft pick and cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie to the Philadelphia Eagles.
The move reportedly saved $7 million in salary cap space. Kolb was plagued by injuries and inconsistent play in his two seasons in Arizona.
He was due to make $9 million this coming season.