On Eli being as good as Brady


On Eli being as good as Brady

By Justin Aucoin

By now youve probably heard the news: Eli Manning is as good as Tom Brady.

"I consider myself in that class andTom Brady(notes)is a great quarterback, he's a great player and what you've seen with him is he's gotten better every year and he started off winning championships and I think he's a better quarterback now than what he was, in all honesty, when he was winning those championships." Eli Manning, ESPN New York 1050

I personally would like to take a moment to thank Eli for correcting us all on this point. For years I thought Tom Brady was one of the best QBs of all time and Eli was only the third greatest quarterback in the Manning clan.

ok, or not.

Yet, like a magician, Manning made us see that his suckiness was all an illusion.

Meanwhile, in the real world where most of us live, Manning isnt anywhere near the caliber Brady is. Its funny to even have to write that sentence out and yet I just did. MJD over at the Shutdown Corner blog summed it up beautifully:

Tom Brady is a better quarterback than Eli Manning, and that's not a criticism of Eli or even a statement of opinion. That's just the way it is. The sun rises in the East, two plus two is four, and Tom Brady is a better quarterback than Eli Manning.

Yet somewhere in Mannings puny little brain he sees Tom when he looks in the mirror.

Listen, Eli, its cool; we all have our idols who we want to be like. I used to pretend I was Bo Jackson when I played football, but, again, that was back when I was 10.

It does make you wonder what the requirements are to get into this special class of NFL QB. Ive thrown for some ridiculous TDs in Tecmo Bowl, does that get me in? In fact, who is included in this class Eli speaks of?

Its a very eclectic class.

And just if you thought Eli comparing himself to Brady wasnt special enough, Eli followed it up with this zinger:

Im not a 25-interception quarterback, I know that.

Huh. Funny. Tell that to all the poor souls that got stuck with you in fantasy football last year.

Brutal. We couldve thrown for less picks. Wonder what spell Eli used to erase that stat from last year.

A lot of people are saying He believes that hes that good and thats what matters. Hogwash. Hogwash, I say. I can tell people Im 63, a millionaire with more charm than the Old Spice Guy doesnt make it so.

Likewise, confidence doesnt equate to talent. Otherwise wed all be Hall of Famers dating super models way out of our league. Life would turn into one giant Little League trophy ceremony where everyone gets a nice try award. Wheres the fun in that?

But whatever floats Elis boat, I guess. If telling himself hes as good as Brady lets him sleep soundly at night, more power to him. We all know the truth.

Vikings hold off Lions 30-23 to extend win streak to 7


Vikings hold off Lions 30-23 to extend win streak to 7

DETROIT = Case Keenum threw for two touchdowns and ran for a score in the first half to give the Minnesota Vikings a double-digit lead and they went on to win a seventh straight game, 30-23 over the Lions in the traditional Thanksgiving Day game in Detroit. Click here to read more. 

Pats can find reasons for thanks everywhere

Pats can find reasons for thanks everywhere

The Patriots hit Thanksgiving with an 8-2 record, a stranglehold on first place in the AFC East, and a rest-of-the-season schedule -- save for the much-anticipated meeting with the Steelers on Dec. 17 -- almost bereft of quality opponents. So they have a lot to be thankful for.

But here are some things you may not be aware of . . . 


Whoever came up with the stuff Tom Brady's resistance bands are made out of -- it's actually "surgical-grade dipped latex tubing sheathed in ballistic nylon," according to the TB12 website -- probably deserves a tip of the cap from the entire region. The 40-year-old uses the bands extensively as part of his training regimen, and he currently leads the league in passing yards, yards per attempt, quarterback rating, rating under pressure and touchdown-to-interception ratio. 


Offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia was retired just a couple of years ago. He traveled. He spent time with his grandchildren. Then the Patriots called. After some time to think about it -- and after talking it over with his wife Susan -- Scarnecchia opted to come back after two years away from the game. At 69 years old, he's helped this year's unit overcome some early-season struggles, and he still seems to be on top of his game. Think the Patriots are happy he had his wife's blessing to jump back in? 


You weren't expecting this, were you? Bill Belichick has said he's not a fan . . . but that's on game days. "I’m done with the tablets," he said last year. "I’ve given them as much time as I can give them. They’re just too undependable for me." But when it comes to players using tablets on their own time? They're incredibly useful. Whereas years ago players would have to come into the facility early or stay late in order to watch extra film, now they can study from the comfort of their own homes, on a team flight, or while riding in a car (as long as they aren't driving). For teams that have players who want to be over-prepared, having access to all-22 video at any time can be an advantage. 


Who's this, you ask? He's the Los Angeles-based back specialist who operated on Rob Gronkowski's back last year. He operated on the big tight end in 2009 and 2013, and his latest procedure seems to be holding up as well as possible. Gronkowski quickly regained his strength and athleticism, and he continues to be his team's most dynamic offensive weapon. He has 41 catches for 619 yards and five scores this season, and he's been used extensively as a blocker in the running game and in pass protection. Gronkowski deserves credit -- as does the Patriots medical, training and nutrition staffs -- for being so effective in his return to the field, but the Patriots are probably thankful that last year's back surgery went as well as it did.  


Trey Flowers has been arguably his team's most dependable defender this season. According to Pro Football Focus, he's been on the field for 606 snaps, which is fourth among edge defenders. His 338 pass-rush snaps are second among 4-3 defensive ends, per PFF. He's played through injury at times, and he's remained productive. Against the Raiders he had three quarterback hits and three hurries. So why would the Patriots be thankful for Flowers Construction Co.? That's the Huntsville, Alabama company run by Flowers' father, Robert, who put Trey to work when he was growing up. The work ethic he learned on-site has helped him go from a fourth-round pick who lost most of his rookie season to injury into a playing-time iron man and one of the team's most reliable defenders.