As Eli Manning and the New York Giants finish up yet another lost season in Jersey, questions are going to be raised about the quarterback’s future with the organization.
At 37 years old, Manning is nowhere near the same quarterback that led New York to two Super Bowl titles earlier in his career.
As the team continues its rebuild, there’s a good chance New York will go quarterback in the first round of next year’s NFL Draft. If so, Manning himself might leave to latch on with a contender.
At the very least, that’s the narrative being thrown around. But according to this report from Ralph Vacchiano of SNY, it’s not a foregone conclusion Manning won’t be back with the Giants next season. In fact, he could return as the starter.
“There is still a chance that Manning will return to the Giants in 2019 — and even return as their starting quarterback, according to a team source,” Vacchiano reports. “The decision on his future has ‘absolutely not’ been made, the source said, and management is open to the idea that another year with Manning at the helm might be the best option they have.”
Manning has one year remaining on his current contract and is set to count $23.2 million against the cap. If the Giants were to simply release him, they’d be on the hook for a $6.2 million dead cap hit. Though, a trade could ultimately be the end game here.
A lot of this will depend on how well Manning plays over the final five games and whether the Giants truly believe there’s a better stopgap option at quarterback in free agency this coming spring.
But for now, it’s probably time to stop writing our Eli Manning as a Giant eulogy.