Eli Manning Benching Appears Inevitable

After an ugly loss to the Eagles on Thursday night, Giants head coach Pat Shurmur was asked if he would be making a quarterback change. Shurmur replied, “No. We believe in Eli (Manning).” But that did not do much to quell the rumors surrounding Manning’s job security, and Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports writes that the team will inevitably make a switch at some point this season.

La Canfora adds that Manning’s poor performance in 2018, which has included missing receivers even on basic screens and slants, has led to increased tension in the locker room. Players are reportedly frustrated with the lack of creativity on offense and the limitations that Manning’s abilities at this stage of his career have placed on that unit. They also remain disappointed in the team’s failure to grab one of the elite QB prospects in this year’s draft, a decision that was criticized at the time but which now appears borderline irresponsible.

Star receiver Odell Beckham Jr. made a number of public comments earlier this month that earned him a fine from the team, but those comments were nonetheless quite telling. OBJ failed to support Manning, and La Canfora says that he was not just speaking for himself. Indeed, one source who has discussed the matter privately with various Giants players said, “[l]et’s just say a quarterback change wouldn’t be unwelcome.”

Of course, without a top-tier prospect to turn to, it will be difficult for Giants fans to get too excited about the quarterback switch. After surprisingly waiving 2017 third-rounder Davis Webb before the start of the 2018 season, the team is currently rostering fourth-round rookie Kyle Lauletta — who has some promise but who does not have top-flight upside — and career backup Alex Tanney, who will turn 31 next month.

In any event, La Canfora believes there is almost no chance that Manning will be on the team in 2019, the last year of his current contract. After this season, New York could save $17MM against the cap by cutting ties with the two-time Super Bowl MVP, whose tremendous run with the only team he has ever known appears to be coming to an ignominious end.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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14 comments on “Eli Manning Benching Appears Inevitable

  1. czap

    Look I get it, Eli is old and not helping the team at all at this point. However “borderline irresponsible” for drafting Barkley is a terrible take. La Canfora should be embarrassed by that statement. The giants without a doubt are more than a rookie qb away from being competitive. They had an unbelievably bad run game in recent years and they addressed that issue by drafting arguably the best play maker in the NFL today. Get over yourselves already, these “giants shouldn’t have drafted Barkley” takes are the worst.

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    • fletch1367

      Thought the Giants made a mistake by not drafting a QB wIth the 2nd pick. Barkley has changed my mind. The kid is dynamic. The G-men should stick with Eli for the year which should give them a top pick in 2019 draft where they can grab the QB to replace Eli. Go Eagles!

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    • MrMet17

      There is no way drafting Barkley was a mistake !

      Imagine putting one of these rookie QBs behind this O-line, with Gallman as the lead back? They’d quit

      Rookie QB prospects are a dime a dozen every year, a player of Barkley’s caliber isn’t.

      Would anyone trade Barkley straight up for one of the rookie QBs? I sure wouldn’t

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      • Polish Hammer

        They most certainly did make a mistake with getting Barkley, and that’s no knock on him as he’ll have a fine career. But they needed an heir apparent to Cable TV Eli. They’ll get a few years out of Saquan and just as he starts to break down that franchise QB they should’ve drafted will really come into his own in his offense and continue his climb as a franchise QB.

        Nobody said the rookie QB had to start behind that line either, he could’ve sat behind Eli until the swap was ready.

        And Cleveland should have found a way to grab Barkley and their franchise QB with their picks.

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        • MrMet17

          Uh, yeah, they would have to start behind that line, Eli doesn’t belong out there anymore. That’s the point.

          But your last point is spot on, Cleveland should have taken Barkley first and their choice of QB at 4

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      • Michael Chaney

        Rookie quarterbacks are not a dime a dozen. If they were really so easy to find, then teams like the Browns, Jets, and Dolphins wouldn’t have struggled for the last several years. Honestly, that’s an insane thing to say.

        Either way though, saying the Giants should have taken a quarterback isn’t an indictment on Barkley. He’s already an elite running back just weeks into his career. But how many teams win championships with just a good running back? It’s still a quarterback-driven league for the most part, and having a great running back doesn’t really mean much if the rest of your team is bad.

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        • MrMet17

          Is it?! Is it really insane? Who’s to say the guy that the Giants might have grabbed doesn’t turn into the guys in the same vein as those chosen by your mentioned teams. They got the sure thing, and he’s the only thing worth watching on the Giants right now.

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  2. Bill Jasper

    Barkley will help take a ton of pressure off of a young developing QB. It is the choice I would’ve made in the Giants shoes.

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  3. acarneglia

    Eli can’t move, the pocket collapses and he’s basically stuck there. Even if he had the mobility of a guy like Ben or Brady it would help significantly

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  4. RockHauler

    Fact is the Giants didn’t believe in any of the QBs in this years draft. They felt that Eli with a RB to make defenses respect the long forgotten running game of the Giants, as well as a few additions to the OL would give Eli those extra seconds to get the ball downfield. Trouble is, the OL is only marginally better, Eli looks like a deer in headlights even without a rush in his face, and the fact there is no veteran backup to push him or go to is a problem. You can see both the coach (last game he was seen yelling at Eli to throw the ball), and the players getting frustrated. With all that being said, I understand the pick of Barkley, and support it, but they should have picked up a veteran like Bridgewater just in case.

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    • sfazio

      That is a good point. Picking up Bridgewater would have been ideal.

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