NY Sports Day

Moeller: Manning’s Return Can Rekindle Memories and Can Revive Hope For Future

Dave Pokress/NYSD

The Giants finally got a break this season.

Giants’ fans may have something to celebrate for the holidays.
No, they weren’t automatically awarded the first pick in next year’s draft, although they appear to be headed in that direction anyway.

They are in the position to give quarterback Eli Manning a much-deserved final appearance or maybe more for his numerous and storied contributions to Big Blue’s football annals.

All signs had pointed to Manning announcing his break from the Giants – whether retire or move on – shortly after the season, as Manning had become a virtual ghost, becoming unnoticeable and one of the first players out the locker room.

With starting quarterback Daniel Jones being bothered by a high ankle sprain, Manning will get his first start since week two ironically in Philadelphia Monday night. Manning has the chance to salvage some respectability and possibly save head coach Pat Shurmur’s job for the once solid franchise that looks more like a dilapidated one with a 10—34 record over nearly the past three seasons.

With some rust expected to be shaken off from being inactive for 10 weeks, Manning will face a team that he has a 10-20 career mark, and he has lost his last five games against the Eagles.

Manning can truly be the spoiler against Philadelphia, which certainly struggled and underachieved this season with a 5-7 record and two years removed from winning their first Super Bowl.

The 38-year-old won’t have the scrambling and escaping capability of Jones, but he isn’t likely to throw bad interceptions or to be jarred into fumbles.

Over the closing weeks, Giants’ fans should relish Manning’s presumed final games and truly appreciate what he has done for the franchise and establish himself as a future
Hall of Famer.

Beginning Monday night, Manning has the opportunity to showcase his talents for a new home next season even though many believe this will be final season.

With nothing to play for except a draft pick, the Giants may be wise to sit Jones for the remainder of the season and let Manning have his last hurrah.

Manning may be able to resurrect some positive vibes for the future despite a shattered and tattered defense that likely won’t hold its own over the next four games.

Winning in Philadelphia certainly is a Giant task, but Manning’s return brings a new twist.

Could he revive and lead the Giants to a couple of wins down the stretch? We’ll see what happens Monday.

Whatever the outcome, Manning will remind Giants’ fans how life was and how hopefully it could be.


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