New York Giants: Mike Glennon, Jimmy Garoppolo Prove Eli Manning Is a Godsend

Dec 18, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) throws the ball during the third quarter against the Lions at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 18, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) throws the ball during the third quarter against the Lions at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports /

Quarterbacks coveted during the 2017 NFL free agency period have proven that New York Giants Iron Man Eli Manning is every GM’s dream.

If the 2017 NFL free agency period has taught us anything, it’s that solid quarterbacks like Eli Manning are in high demand, but in low supply. How else can somebody explain the Houston Texans agreeing to shell out $72 million to Brock Osweiler? Or the Chicago Bears parting ways with Jay Cutler to back a Brinks truck up to Mike Glennon’s doorstep? Or rumors that the Cleveland Browns would trade a first-round pick to fatten Jimmy Garropolo’s wallet?

Related Story: NFL Free Agency: One Move Each Team Must Make

All three young quarterbacks have enough talent to play in the NFL. All three have primarily been backups with starts ranging from a couple to a couple seasons. All three have shown promise. But, have they done enough to justify major paydays? Let’s take a look:

  • Brock Osweiler – 21 starts over five seasons, 488 completions for 5,000+ yards and 26 touchdowns with Houston Texans and Denver Broncos, averages $18 million per season (the same amount as Tony Romo and Osweiler might get released by Cleveland Browns)
  • Mike Glennon – 18 starts over three seasons, 374 completions for 4,000 yards and 30 touchdowns for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, will average $15 million per season with Chicago Bears (slightly less than Tyrod Taylor and Andy Dalton)
  • Jimmy Garoppolo – two starts over three seasons, 63 completions for 690 yards and five touchdowns, should average $15 – $18 million per season with new team

Call it “The Matt Schaub Effect” or even “The Matt Flynn Phenomenon“, but any quarterback that briefly steps into the spotlight and performs well over a short span is immediately considered “must-have” material. Yet, there are still critics who consistently eviscerate Eli Manning.

More from NFL Spin Zone

Don’t get it twisted; I’ve been one of those critics. But, this free agency period has shown me the light. I had an epiphany at breakfast: Eli Manning is elite. He’s elite in that he’s done what only a rare few—like Brett Favre and his brother, Peyton Manning—have accomplished. He’s remained healthy enough to start and give his squad a chance at winning. Whether or not he plays well enough to win is another story.

Put it this way: If there were somebody better than Eli Manning to quarterback the Giants over the past 13 seasons, the Giants camp would’ve leaked information about candidates. There would be rumors and speculation similar to what you’re hearing now, with pundits predicting the Giants are searching for Eli’s heir. Any time Eli Manning had a “bad” season, you’d hear fans calling for his head. But, ultimately, the response was always the same: “Yeah, but…who are you going to get to replace him?”

Desperate fans and shock-jock media personalities would usually throw out a name or two and more sensible kinds would ridicule them. The truth is, former Giants general Ernie Accorsi saw something special in Eli Manning when Eli was at Ole Miss, per It’s why Accorsi traded Philip Rivers to get Eli in the 2004 NFL Draft. It’s why Accorsi didn’t gamble on Ben Roethlisberger.

The number of debates over Rivers vs. Manning vs. Roethlisberger has reached astronomical levels. But, with Big Ben considering retirement, Philip Rivers repeatedly running into a wall, and Eli equipped with a tremendous trio of wide receivers and a dominant defense, that debate might finally come to an end. When Eli Manning wins a third (and possibly fourth Super Bowl), is there any argument?

Next: Fantasy Football: Winners From Free Agency Day 1

Of course, now that I’ve finally acquiesced and shown my gratitude for the longest tenured and greatest Giants quarterback in franchise history, I’ve probably jinxed him into an injury. Maybe the Giants should draft a quarterback with their first round pick after all?