The New York Giants are standing behind quarterback, Eli Manning, despite the team’s 1 and 5 start. Manning has been having some early season struggles, which begs the question of whether they would stand behind any quarterback, or are they cutting Manning some slack because of who he is? In this season, Manning has six touchdown passes and six turnovers over the course of six games. These kinds of statistics aren’t great. He struggled badly in a 34-13 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles this past week, when he completed only 24 of 43 passes for 281 yards and an interception. In addition, Manning was sacked four times by the Philadelphia Eagles. All of that said, a change at the quarterback position is still not on the table for the Giants, who play next week against the Falcons.
So why is there no change in the position? Simply put, the Giants believe in Eli, according to a statement made by coach Pat Shurmur. The Giants don’t have a lot of experience behind their longtime starting quarterback. Alex Tanney has served as the backup for the first six weeks, with rookie Kyle Lauletta being inactive right now. Tanney has appeared in one career game. Lauletta, on the other hand, is a fourth-round pick from Richmond who still hasn’t played in a regular season game. Shurmur isn’t about to put either of them in the mix this early in the season.
But should he? With everything that’s going on with Manning, the Giants are still under fire for not drafting the number two quarterback, overall. Instead, they selected Saquon Barley, who had 130 yards rushing and 99 yards receiving against the Eagles. He has scored six of the Giants’ 11 offensive touchdowns this season, but that still hasn’t led to victories or cured any of the challenges that the Giants are facing this season. All of that said, they also aren’t upset with their final draft decision.
Manning, who is 37, has indicated that he will take a few days off and return feeling energized. He is still a committed player and wants to help the Giants improve their gameplay. The Giants are in last place in the NFC East and are ranked 28th in the NFL overall, averaging 19.5 points per game. Manning does take the blame for this and feels that he needs to do better. He is a two-time Super Bowl winner and has been a great player throughout his career.
While I don’t think that this is the case, there is a chance that the Giants are taking a bigger risk with Manning because of who he is. Of course, if Manning were a rookie, or just starting out in his career, they might feel otherwise. While not old in the game of life, Manning is getting on in his career as a professional athlete. Yes, he still has some years left in him, but how many depends on his body. As I’ve said countless times over the last couple of weeks, once players get to a certain age, they start to play differently. Some can withstand bigger injuries and recover faster, but ultimately father time is nipping at their heels. All of that aside, we do hope Manning can get it together to end the season on a positive note.