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Broncos find backup option for Manning in Hanie

Make no mistake, it's not a Plan B, but the Denver Broncos have found a backup for Peyton Manning in former Bears quarterback Caleb Hanie.

Hanie, 26, signed a two-year deal with the team, The Denver Post reported Saturday.

This was on the radar. Hanie visited the Broncos this week, but the team waited for the Tim Tebow trade with the Jets to clear before moving forward.

It doesn't mean the Broncos are done at quarterback. The only other arm around is Adam Weber, a practice squad player in 2011. Hanie stands to benefit from working alongside Manning, but if Peyton returns to ironman form, his backup will never be heard from again.

Hanie flashed promise filling in for Jay Cutler against the Packers in the NFC Championship Game in January 2011, but crashed and burned in relief duty last season. After Cutler was sidelined with a broken thumb, Hanie went 0-4 as the Bears starter, throwing three touchdowns alongside a troubling nine interceptions as Chicago's season vanished into an abyss.

The Bears had seen enough from the third-year passer and released Hanie earlier this month, setting him up for this new venture out west.

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