Eli Manning: Daniel Jones will benefit from me not being with Giants
The New York Giants are hoping for Daniel Jones to make a big second-year leap in 2020, and Eli Manning believes his retirement will help the former Duke star accomplish that.
With Manning now out of the picture, Jones will enter training camp and the season as the Giants’ starter. Manning said during an interview with SiriusXM NFL Radio on Monday that he expects Jones to benefit from the fact that Eli retired.
“I think it will be easier this year for him to kind of step up as that leader,” Manning said, as transcribed by Matt Citak of Giants.com. “Last year was probably awkward for him, me being there, me being in meeting rooms and just kind of the whole dynamic. Me being gone and, hey, he is the quarterback, he is the guy, for him to have that control and the authority over receivers and offensive line.”
Manning said he watched Jones do all the right things to earn the respect of his teammates last season, and Eli believes being able to take on more of a leadership role will help Jones develop.
“Now he can elevate that where now he’s in charge,” Manning said. “The questions are coming to him from the coordinator, he’s going to have to give his voice and his opinion on things.”
Manning certainly has a point. Even though he entered the season as the Giants’ starter last year, it was only a matter of time before Jones took over. Manning is an icon in New York, however, and many fans did not want to see him benched. That had to have made things uncomfortable for Jones and many others in the locker room.
While Manning may have seemed bitter toward Jones after the QB change was made last year, getting the rookie some experience was the right move for the Giants. That should pay off in 2020.