The New York Giants continue to make headlines – and not for good reasons.
In a shocking move announced Tuesday, the team will start Geno Smith at quarterback and not Eli Manning.
Manning has started a total of 210 consecutive regular-season games since his first start on Nov. 21, 2004. He holds the second spot in NFL history behind only Brett Favre at 297.
With the Giants standing at 2-9 in a disastrous season, this is the first major change to happen, and it is no secret that head coach Ben McAdoo has been hinting at it. After calling out Manning multiple times in his press conferences, something is finally being addressed.
While Manning is not the one who deserves to be called out for the team’s struggles, this change may jump-start the organization to make moves that will actually benefit the team.
Manning was able to continue his streak. However, he declined because he felt that continuing to play in this unsuccessful season just taints it. The offense has been a mess and is 30th in the league in points with just 16 per game. Manning has completed 167-of-260 passes for 1,600 yards behind an underactive offensive line.
“My feeling is that if you are going to play the other guys, play them,” Manning said to Giants.com. “Starting just to keep the streak going and knowing you won’t finish the game and have a chance to win it is pointless to me, and it tarnishes the streak.”
General manager Jerry Reese told Giants.com that in the midst of this horrible season, it is time to evaluate every position. You can argue whether or not this is the right move, but at least something is finally being done.
“Like I always have, I will be ready to play if and when I am needed,” Manning said. “I will help Geno and Davis [Webb] prepare to play as well as they possibly can.”
Smith is now getting the chance to show the Giants what he can do for them. He has not started a game since Week 7 of the 2016 season, while with the New York Jets. Smith made his NFL debut in 2013 with the Jets and was with them until signing with the Giants this past March. He has 28 career passing touchdowns, 36 interceptions and a 72.4 rating.
Rookie quarterback Davis Webb will also get a chance this season, according to McAdoo. Webb was taken in the third round by the Giants in this year’s draft. He threw 37 touchdowns in his last season at the University of California, Berkeley.
“Over the last five games, we will take a look at Geno, and we will also give Davis an opportunity,” McAdoo said in a statement.
Get ready for some hard change Giants fans. We haven’t seen someone start at QB besides Manning since 2004.