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Why Giants GM Dave Gettleman won’t commit to Eli Manning in 2019

For the first time since July 27, Giants GM Dave Gettleman sat in front of New York media to address the multitude of questions that have built up over his team’s 2018 campaign that ended with a disappointing 5-11 record. And you can guess that one of the first questions he addressed was QB Eli Manning’s future with the franchise. 

Gettleman admitted that he and Manning had an “extensive, no holds barred” conversation on Monday, but wouldn’t divulge on what was discussed. However, he did say what his current stance on the quarterback position for the team will be as he enters the offseason. 

“Here’s what I’m committed to do,” Gettleman said. “I’m committed to making the best decision in the interest of the New York Football Giants. We’re in the evaluation process. I know you wants answers now.”

Manning’s future, then, is up in the air as the offseason begins to unwind. As he did last year, Gettleman will “be watching film for the next who knows how long until my eyes bleed,” and evaluating Manning’s performance will certainly be at the top of his list. 

And though Gettleman wouldn’t commit to Manning for next season, he did point out how well he did on the stat sheet this year. 

“If you’re going to look at stats, it wasn’t too shappy what he did,” Gettleman pointed out. “He still can make the NFL throws. He’s still got it.”

Manning, who turns 38 on Thursday, had one of his best season in 2018 with 4,299 yards, 21 touchdowns to 11 interceptions, and a 66 completion percentage that set a career high. But Gettleman knows stats don’t tell the whole picture, which is why he and his team will have to evaluate every aspect of the season to see what the best bet is for the future. 

“We’re trying to build sustained success,” Gettleman said. “That takes brutal honesty and some tough decisions.”

Whether or not that decision is Manning starting under center in Week 1 next September, Gettleman is committed to making the Giants a winning franchise once again. Manning could get the nod at first, but a rookie or veteran free agent could be waiting in the backup role to take over if, say, the season begins how it did this year.

And as this season shows, Gettleman isn’t afraid to make those tough decisions.

“Not every move is going to work out, as we’ve seen,” he explained. “…But you’ve also seen that if we make a decision and it’s not working, we will make a change.”

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