On a day when New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman offered nothing of real substance regarding the future of quarterback Eli Manning, head coach Pat Shurmur doubled down on his support of the two-time Super Bowl MVP.
While joining WFAN for his weekly spot, Shurmur spoke highly of Manning, the job he did over the second half of the season and strongly implied he’d be back under center to start 2019.
“We believe in Eli. As we move forward here I think the plans here will reveal themselves,” Shurmur said. “He can still play. He can still make the throws. He can still lead the offense. . . can’t do it by themselves. When we started to block better it’s a better indication of what Eli can do. Probably the last eight games of the season is a better indication of what Eli is in my mind.”
“If everybody around the quarterback plays the way they should and we coach the way we should, Eli can have success.”
Shurmur also reiterated that Manning consistently gave the Giants the best chance to win, and so long as those around him play their game, he feels Eli can still win.
“I’ve said this all along: Eli gave us the best opportunity, the best chance to win,” Shurmur added. I appreciate all the good in Eli. He’s all in and I appreciate all the good in Eli.”
Of course, this is not to say Manning will play forever. Shurmur knows Manning’s career is winding down and that he’ll eventually need to be replaced, and when that time comes, the Giants will be ready.
“There’s no doubt. This game isn’t forever. But who’s to say when the end is?” Shurmur questioned.
Some may want to read into Gettleman’s comments or lack thereof, but he’s a master at saying things both sides of a debate can point to and twist to fit their version of beliefs. Shurmur, on the other hand, tells it like it is, and based on his Wednesday comments, do not be remotely surprised when Manning is back in blue in 2019.