This week Giants head coach Tom Coughlin sat down with Kimberly Jones of the NFL Network to discuss the status of QB Eli Manning, who is coming off an ankle injury and his worst season in Blue. Manning is also entrenched in learning a new offensive system implemented by a new offensive coordinator (Ben McAdoo) and QB coach (Danny Langsdorf).
Coughlin on the notion that Eli’s best days are behind him:
“To me he’s young. It all will really stem from the health issues, the things you can’t predict. The case has been, he fights his way through everything anyway. He doesn’t tell you much. I remember when he had the shoulder injury and everyone in his family was saying he won’t play for five or six weeks. He played the next weekend, so I don’t see…as a matter of fact, he’s probably throwing the ball with more velocity out here right now then he’s thrown it in the last couple of years.”
Eli Manning has had to learn his first new offense in ten years. He’s been doing a lot of studying. Do you believe he’s still the guy to lead this franchise to championship-level play?
“No question. There’s no question in my mind about that at all. As a matter of fact, the study part is a good thing. That’s what I really wanted to go ahead and put in place, where the wheels were really churning. It is something for the veteran players that I think is going to naturally fall in place. Just use Eli. If Eli’s grinding and studying as smart as he is, you know those other guys have to apply themselves as well and since they’re all in the same boat, the new the old, whatever, I like it. I think it’s a good thing.”
John Fennelly, Lead Writer
Not to get technical, but Eli has to be Coughlin’s man. The Giants can’t afford for Eli not to be. Manning’s cap number this year is $20.4 million. Next year, the final deal of the six-year deal signed in 2009, also carries a high cap hit ($19.750 mil).
He is likely to have a much better season than he did in 2013, when he tossed a career-high 27 INTs to go with only 18 TD passes and a paltry 69.4 QB rating. Ben McAdoo’s new offense calls for more high-percentage passes and a faster pace. Eli has always operated well in “hurry-up” and fourth quarter scenarios.