Peyton Manning talks up Eli, says Giants’ offensive line is struggling
At least one person who knows the quarterback position thinks Eli Manning can still play.
In a video produced by ESPN, Peyton Manning offered a detailed analysis of his little brother’s performance in Monday night’s win over the 49ers. And Peyton says Eli played that game at a very high level.
Peyton noted that on the first play of the game, Eli made a good read and found Odell Beckham open, but Beckham dropped what could have been a touchdown pass. Peyton also said the changes on the Giants’ offensive line, where two Week One starters are no longer on the team, have been a challenge for Eli. Peyton joked that Eli hadn’t even met all of his offensive linemen until the game started.
“The Giants have had some different offensive linemen playing,” Peyton said. “I think Eli and his right guard met for the first time in the huddle on the first play of the game: ‘How you doing, nice to meet you, I’m gonna be blocking for you.’ ‘OK, I’m gonna be quarterback.’ It’s not ideal when you’re meeting your right guard for the first time in the game.”
So what is Eli doing well? Peyton says Eli is still able to use his feet to avoid the pass rush and hit his targets.
“Eli’s not known for his speed, but he does throw well on the run, and the reason being, watch how his shoulders and feet get lined up toward the target,” he said.
Peyton acknowledged that people will say he’s biased in analyzing Eli, but Peyton said that on a short pass to Saquon Barkley, Eli showed good awareness of Barkley’s ability to beat linebackers in coverage, and Peyton said he’d praise that from any quarterback.
“I know it’s a short throw and you’re going to say, ‘He’s kissing his butt because he’s his brother and related to him.’ I don’t care,” Manning said. “This is a good throw.”
Peyton’s analysis, which is available only on the ESPN+ subscription service, was detailed and thoughtful. It’s easy to see why multiple networks were said to offer Peyton a job in the booth. He’s good, even if, in this case, he’s biased.