Gameday Prelude: Eli Primed to Show Who is Better Once Again
Added by Vin D'Anton on December 3, 2012.
AP Photo: Rich Kane
Seems the biggest story in the NFL this year has been the rookie quarterbacks. At the start of the season, five quarterbacks where slated as starters and as of Week 13, seven are starting.
However, three of them have grabbed the national media more than others. Like Cam Newton last year, these guys are taking the NFL by storm.
There’s Russell Wilson who for most of the season has only been good at home until yesterday when he torched the Bears and won in overtime at Solider Field.
Then we have Andrew Luck, the deserved number one overall pick who like his predecessor in Indy, never won the Heisman Trophy. Yesterday, Luck took his team down the field twice in the final five minutes and won on the last play of the game at Ford Field.
Then we have Robert Griffin III, the quarterback of the revived Washington Redskins whom the New York Giants face tonight in a Monday Night Football showdown. Justin Tuck said earlier this year that he would take RG3 over any other rushing quarterback; that includes Michael Vick and Newton.
RG3 has made amazing plays all year, starting with a win in New Orleans and then displaying near perfection in Dallas on Thanksgiving as last week. Way more impressive than Newton due to the fact that Griffin blows Cam out of the water in passing. Griffin has had an over 100-passer rating since Week 1 and is tied for second place with Peyton Manning who is behind Aaron Rodgers.
All this hype for another quarterback plays right into the hands of two-time Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning. He made it clear over the summer that grabbing the back pages is usually a bad thing so he’s glad it’s not him on the back. The Jets took care of that this summer.
When he was asked about the Jets situation, he made it clear that he didn’t care because “I’m not the starting quarterback for the Jets.”
A handful of national pundits did not have the Giants making the playoffs this year, never mind winning the division. As usual, it was all about the talent “on paper” of the Cowboys and Eagles.
The Giants with a win tonight will make a division title that much easier. They have a tough schedule to finish the season so this game can make or break them. Next week it’s the Saints at home than a road trip to Baltimore and Atlanta.
Then again, should Giant fans worry about being in a big spot? Do they not have a proven leader at the quarterback position?
This summer, all I heard from people was how amazing Cam Newton is and I met people who would take him over Eli. The Giants in Week 3 were 1-1 and had Philly the next week. What the Giants do? Destroy the Panthers on Thursday Night Football.
Heading into to San Francisco, the Niners wouldn’t shut up about revenge for a championship they felt they “should have won.” Result: a 26-3 beat down at Candlestick.
The Packers wanted their revenge for last years playoff loss, stating they “beat themselves” in the divisional playoff. Eli was in a slump; Aaron Rodgers was the hottest quarterback in football. Giants blow the Packers out the building 38-10.
Then there’s a 3-1 record against Tom Brady and the Patriots for Eli. Super Bowl XLII, a 2011 road win at New England that broke Brady’s streak and than Super Bowl XLVI.
Going in to each of these games, the hype was the opposition, not Eli Manning.
Today on WFAN, I heard Boomer Esiason talk about how RG3 is playing right now and that would lead to a Redskins victory over the Giants. He added that with all these rookies playing the way they did yesterday, Griffin will just add to it. All week, it’s been about RG3 and what he can do.
What can Eli Manning do? Well it seems only Giants fans know what he can do; and in a situation where you need a big win, who do you want under center?
A rhetorical question for the national fan, but a simple answer for the Giants.