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NFL: Dumervil cut after late file

by The Associated Press on March 16, 2013 11:00 AM

Elvis Dumervil was staying with the Denver Broncos.

And then, he wasn’t.

On another busy day of NFL free agency, the highlight — or lowlight — came after a strange sequence of events in which the Broncos and the defensive end reached an agreement on a new deal that ended up not valid because the paperwork was filed too late.

And now, Dumervil is a free agent.

Also Friday, Greg Jennings left Green Bay to head to rival Minnesota, Dustin Keller became the latest member of the Jets to leave and Kevin Kolb was released by Arizona.

According to a source close to the situation, the day played out like this:

  • At 1:25 p.m., local time, 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.

Though the sides 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.

Meanwhile, the Jets had their busiest day yet of free agent signings. New York signed running back Mike Goodson, offensive lineman Willie Colon and nose tackle Antonio Garay. Colon, a native of the Bronx, spent his entire NFL career with the Pittsburgh Steelers before they cut him this week.

Since free agency began, the Jets have lost several starters, including Keller, running back Shonn Greene (Tennessee), safeties LaRon Landry (Indianapolis) and Yeremiah Bell (Arizona), defensive lineman Mike DeVito (Kansas City) and nose tackle Sione Po’uha (released).

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