Denver Broncos general manager John Elway expects a decision on Peyton Manning's future by March 9 but says the veteran quarterback has earned the right to take his time.
Manning has remained non-committal on talk of his impending retirement since winning his second Super Bowl title in the Broncos' 24-10 victory over the Carolina Panthers this month.
With the 39-year-old's $19million salary for 2016 becoming fully guaranteed on March 9, the clock would appear to be ticking on Manning to decide whether he is going to call it a career.
But Elway told Pro Football Talk: "Obviously everyone wants to know what Peyton is going to do and after 18 years in this league he deserves some time to think about and enjoy the game but also get away for a little and kind of figure out exactly what he wants to do.
"We're going to afford him that, I told him we'll get back together again in another week or 10 days and kind of see where he is and go from there. But he deserves some time to think about what he wants to do."
Asked if the Broncos expect to know what Manning is going to do before March 9, Elway replied: "Yeah and we will.
"Until we get there and until we absolutely need that we're going to give him that time to continue to, obviously when he gets farther away from the game and clears his head a bit, he could kind of see where he wants to go."
Backup Brock Osweiler - who played in eight games in 2015 - becomes a free agent on March 9, but Elway insists the Manning situation will not impact discussions with the 25-year-old.
"We're really not in a hurry. Everything is still real fluid," Elway explained. "We know where Brock is. Brock knows what we have to offer.
"We still have a great deal of interest in Brock. We'd like to do something with Brock. With that in mind, also affording Peyton the time that he deserves, we're not in any rush.
"Like you said, there are 12 days. We'll continue to give Peyton that time and continue to work with Brock."