NFL Rumors: After Losing Starting Job, Eli Manning’s Best Option Could Be Retirement

Eli Manning throws a pass in an NFL game.
Emilee Chinn / Getty Images

Eli Manning has finally lost his starting job with the New York Giants, and some believe that retirement could be coming next.

On Tuesday, the Giants announced that rookie Daniel Jones would be taking over the starting job after a poor start to the season both for Manning and the rest of the team. As ESPN reported, Giants coach Pat Shurmur said he broke the news to Manning, who was disappointed but prepared to be a “good teammate” and help prepare the team to win.

The Giants had used the No. 6 overall pick on Daniel Jones, the Duke quarterback who was expected to one day take over for Manning as the team’s starter. This may have been sooner than some expected, but the Giants lost the first two games by a combined 32 points, falling to 0-2 for the sixth time in the last seven seasons.

While Manning has not said publicly whether he is considering retirement, there were widespread rumors that the two-time Super Bowl MVP may decide not to play out the rest of the season. The loss to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday brought Manning’s lifetime record to an even 116-116. Ending his career with a losing record could sink whatever chances he may have had at getting into the Hall of Fame. There was some belief that the Giants chose now to name Jones as starter rather than risk running Manning’s record to below.500, though the team did not mention this at all in announcing the move.

Retirement could be next for Manning, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk speculated. He noted that Manning has an uncertain future with the Giants for the next 14 games of this season, which would be “awkward” for Manning to play through as the backup.

“Maybe the best outcome would be a retirement coupled with partial payment of the $10.14 million he’d still be owed, if released,” Florio speculated. “He’d go on the reserve/retired list, pass through waivers if he decides to return in 2019, and otherwise not be looming over the shoulder of the guy in whom the Giants entrusted their future when making him the sixth overall pick in the 2019 draft.”

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That move could bring its own complications. As The Inquisitr noted, injuries to Nick Foles, Ben Roethlisberger, Trevor Siemian, and Sam Darnold, among others, have thinned out the pool of available backups considerably. If Eli Manning does choose to retire, the Giants would have little-used 31-year-old Alex Tanney as the primary backup.