Eli Manning explains what he meant with his Russell Wilson joke
Eli Manning is trying to smooth things over following a joke he made about Russell Wilson’s contract during Monday’s telecast.
Both Wilson and the Denver Broncos offense struggled mightily on Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers, which was a topic of discussion during Monday’s ManningCast of the Giants-Cowboys game. At one point, Manning joked that the Broncos should have paid punter Corliss Waitman $235 million instead, considering how excellent he was and how often he was called into duty.
— ESPN (@espn) September 27, 2022
On Tuesday, Manning argued that he was not trying to be critical of Wilson with the comment, and he was simply making an “outrageous joke.”
“No, I don’t think we’re trying to be critical. I think we always try to support the guys that are in the game,” Manning told Michael McCarthy of Front Office Sports. “I think sometimes, ‘Hey, it’s live TV.’ I never try to take a real shot at somebody. I think that was obviously a very outrageous joke — because a punter had 10 punts. Nothing against Russell. He’s going to do great.”
Manning can say that he thinks Wilson will be great while simultaneously admitting that it was a pretty vicious joke. Sure, it’s a joke that plenty of others might have made, but it certainly could not be construed as supportive.
This isn’t the first time Manning has arguably gone a bit too far on the ManningCast. As he said, however, this is how live television will be sometimes.