Many people forget that Eli Manning was actually drafted by the San Diego Chargers in 2004. Less than an hour later, he was traded to the New York Giants after he made it perfectly clear that he had no desire to play for San Diego. The Chargers wound up with Rivers, the Giants got Eli and the rest is history.
At the time, it seemed fairly obvious that Eli’s father Archie Manning wanted him to play in New York. That was believed to be the driving force behind his refusal to play for the Chargers, but don’t expect Eli to admit that. With the Giants visiting San Diego this weekend, reporters asked Manning about the infamous trade on Wednesday. His response was classic.
“I forgot, I think,” Manning said, via Conor Orr of the Star-Ledger. “I just can’t remember, it’s been 10 years. It slipped my mind.”
Manning was pressed further when one reporter asked if demanding a trade was simply about maneuvering his way to the right organization.
“Ten years ago, I don’t know,” he said. “I can’t remember.”
Talk about your all-time classic copouts. You would think Manning would anticipate having to field these questions this week and have some better answers than “I don’t know” prepared. Still, he insisted he has nothing against the city of San Diego.
I have nothing against San Diego as a city,” Eli added. “We had our rookie symposium there and besides that, we’ve had a few other things, I know it’s a beautiful city and great weather. There’s a lot of great things to it.”
Eli was traded to the Giants on draft day nearly a decade ago, but don’t expect Chargers fans to let him live it down. He’ll likely be greeted with a chorus of boos on Sunday.