Why Eli Manning Would Go To The Steelers
If you haven't heard by now. Its a mess in the New York Giants organization, 1 week after QB Eli Manning got benched, the head coach Ben McAdoo and GM Jerry Reese have been fired. The New York Giants look to be in rebuild mode for the start of the 2018 season. So the question is, what does the future hold for Eli Manning? This question has surfaced and has been a hot topic around the sports and NFL media since the announcement of his benching. Im not going to pull out any stats but Eli is good enough to play in this league and could start for a number of teams next year. Some of the teams brought up in this discussion include: Arizona Cardinals, Jacksonville Jaguars, Denver Broncos or remaining a Giant. There is also speculation that Eli could retire.
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Why not Arizona? Arizona could have an open spot next year if Carson Palmer retires. We know retirement is on his mind. Lets say Palmer does retire and a spot is open. Eli would once again play behind a terrible o-line which have allowed the 25th most sacks this year and worse receivers than he has now in NY. His best receiver would be Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald who like Palmer is fighting father time and may be retiring soon as well. Sure he would have a good RB behind him in David Johnson but as a QB the offensive line and receiving core would be more important.
Why not Jacksonville? Jacksonville has been the most popular potential destination because of former Giants Head Coach Tom Coughlin being in the front office. Its possible the Jaguars might take a stab and grabbing Eli but unless they choose to get rid of current QB Blake Bortles, it will be a QB battle in Jacksoville and Bortles will have the slight edge. As far as numbers, Bortles has played better this year. Bortles has a QBR of 52 compared to Eli with a QBR of 44. Bortles is also slightly more mobile, younger and obviously will know the offense better.
Why not Denver? Denver has been brought up because of Eli's brother Peyton Manning. Peyton joined Denver after being run out of Indianapolis and took the Broncos to 4 straight playoff appearances 2 Superbowls and winning 1 before he retired. Its thought Denver and GM John Elway could bring in Eli and have close to similar success but this is not true. Eli isn't Peyton and this isn't the same Denver team, especially the offensive line which has been garbage this season. Not only that, Like Jacksonville, Eli would be in another QB battle. He would probably win but as a Superbowl winning veteran, who wants to be in a QB Battle especially with a team which may not have that much success anyways. Of Arizona, Jacksonville and Denver; Denver would be the favorite but don't look for Eli to take Denver to the Playoffs, especially in a division which has gotten tougher the last couple years.
Will he remain in New York? The future of the Giants organization is unknown, and with the firing of the HC and GM. They look to be in rebuild mode. So will Eli want to play on a team that is rebuilding? The answer to that question really doesn't matter if they are indeed rebuilding. The Giants will likely have the 2nd pick in the NFL draft and in good shape to draft the next franchise QB, whether its UCLA QB Josh Rosen or USC QB Sam Darnold. The Giants will probably make this decision for Eli and move on.
Now we come to the retirement argument. Eli will definitely retire if he feels he would not be a starting QB in the league next year and or win. He could easily take his 2 Superbowl rings, ride of in the sunset, do a bunch of commercials like his brother and hope to be nominated in the Hall of Fame one day. The fact is, he could still be a starting QB in this league. And get to join a possible Superbowl contender. And that brings me to the Team i think has the best chance of getting Eli.
The Steelers.- Its no secret current QB Ben Roetlisberger is most likely retiring at the end of the year. Especially after publicly almost doing so at the end of last season, but the idea of winning a Superbowl brought him back. But after this season the Steelers organization will likely be looking for a new QB and there's no need to rebuild with all star talent on the offensive side of the ball and improvement on the defensive side. The coaching position wont change and the Steelers will likely have a team good enough to make a push a top the AFC and for the Superbowl. But with Big Ben gone, they will need a competent QB. Look no further than Eli Manning. Eli is a team player and can help bring stability to a team who can be filled with drama and inconsistencies. There will be no QB competion and Eli will have a great team around him that comes with an upgrade of offensive talent compared to the Giants. I am actually surprised this possibilty hasnt been brought up among the sports media but it makes total sense.