Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Jerry Reese Does Not Fear Wounded Ducks

On the heels of a very poor performance in the playoffs against the Eagles, the Daily News says that the Giants are close to signing Eli Manning to an massive extension:

Based on interviews with several agents and personnel people, Eli Manning appears to be in line for a seven or eight-year contract worth $110-$120M with $40M in guarantees. That would make the 28-year-old the eighth quarterback to top the $100M barrier, and would put him near the top with Philadelphia's Donovan McNabb (12 years, $115M), Cincinnati's Carson Palmer (nine years, $118.75M), and former Atlanta quarterback Michael Vick (10 years, $130M).
Brett Favre (10/$100M) and Big Ben (8/$102M) have inked deals at that level, while big brother Peyton signed a 7 year deal worth $98M in 2004, keeping him just on the outside that barrier, and Tom Brady took a sweetheart deal to stay with New England for six and $60M.

Still, that upper tier of the $100M QB Club looks a whole lot more like the group of MLB pitchers who have eclipsed that barrier than you'd like it to. Palmer and Vick especially have not lived up to their contracts, while McNabb has probably played to his $9.6M AAV overall, but has not won a Super Bowl and has had some terrible lows in Philly. Simarly, Mike Hampton, Kevin Brown, and Barry Zito all woefully under preformed their deals. This is excluding Johan Santana who is off to a good start, but still has six years left, and of course Sabathia has yet to earn a dollar of his mega deal.

Not everyone is a fan of Eli's. Before the Super Bowl victory last year, there was certainly a disproportionate amount of hatred, blame and venom spewed in his direction. If Asante Samuel came up with that near-interception on the final drive of the Super Bowl, that might still be the case. But because of David Tyree and the defensive line, people like Max Kellerman exault his clutchiferousness, and heap him with inordinate praise.

His current deal expires next year and I can understand the reasons the Giants have for locking him up. But what other team is willing to make a play for Manning in that financial stratosphere? There are plenty of teams with a need at QB (Lions, Vikings, 49ers, Bears, Bucs, Chiefs, Sehawks, and possibly the Jets and Rams), but what are they going to pay for him? No free agent QB has ever got $100M from a new team.

Since Eli is experienced in the Giants' system and has established himself in New York, maybe he is worth that much to the organization. He's shown steady improvement over his five years in the Meadowlands, with both increasing completion percentages and QB Ratings. Last year's playoff run was one of the most inspiring storylines I've watched unfold in my years as a sports fan. This year, he had 21 TDs to only 10 picks.

But you only really have to pay him more than he is worth to other teams. Right?

It's just an oddly timed decision. Maybe the organization wants to show some solidarity towards the face of the franchise in the aftermath of a tough loss. Is Eli really going to hold out or walk away from the Giants though? He has shown he was capable of exacting some pretty strong leverage with his demand to be traded from the Chargers when he was drafted. I guess he has a pretty damn good agent...


  1. 1050AM keeps stealing yor ish homie. Miccccccchhhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaeeeeeeellllllllllll K is on the radio talking about this subject right now.

  2. That is a lot of cash, but all you have to do is think back to the the Dave Brown and Danny Kennell years convince yourself how great of a deal this is for us.

  3. Yeah it's just that in football, how much you committ to one player impacts how much you can committ to the rest of the team. We are lucky to have a competent QB, I just don't think he deserves all-time record-type money.

    @Joe: Those bastards must be refreshing CONSTANTLY! I'll have none of this pilfery!