Eli Manning reportedly struggles in first 2019 practice but Pat Shurmur says he looks 'really good'
The actual performance doesn't matter much, but the Giants' description of it fits a concerning pattern
Perhaps no NFL team has been more criticized this offseason than the New York Giants. The Giants traded Odell Beckham Jr. and Olivier Vernon to the Browns for comparatively little return and let Landon Collins leave for division rival Washington, for example, and while those moves were panned, nothing about the Giants' plan has been more scrutinized than their moves at quarterback.
Not only did the Giants decline to cut ties with longtime starter Eli Manning before his roster bonus became guaranteed, they drafted Daniel Jones -- which many felt was too high -- and then general manager Dave Gettleman promptly declared that he could see Jones before he becomes the starter.
The good news is Manning apparently looked very good in the first day of 2019 practices.
Sounds great! The issue is this:
To be perfectly clear: Manning going 1-6 with two interceptions in a team period at a practice in mid-May does not matter at all. But that Pat Shurmur felt the need to declare that he looked really good and threw the ball well seemingly speaks to the Giants' collective delusion about where Manning's current skill level really is.
At a certain point the Giants will have to admit that Manning -- who has had a very nice career and been reliable for a long time and won two Super Bowls with two of the greatest playoff runs ever -- no longer has it, and that it's time to move on. That day is likely coming sooner rather than later. But it will be pushed off for longer if the Giants keep stubbornly insisting that Manning is doing well when he is not, as Gettleman did earlier this offseason when asked about Manning's 2018 performance.
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