Tuesday’s NFL: Giants bench QB Eli Manning
East Rutherford, N.J. — Eli Manning is not going to be the starting quarterback for the New York Giants for the first time in more than 13 years.
And yes, he is not happy about it and hurt.
Tears welled in his eyes talking to reporters and his chin quivered when asked about how much this hurt.
The Giants announced on Tuesday that Geno Smith will start in place of Manning when the Giants (2-9) face the Raiders in Oakland on Sunday.
Coach Ben McAdoo gave the 36-year-old Manning the option of starting to keep his streak of 210 consecutive starts alive, but Manning, a two-time Super Bowl MVP, didn’t want any part of that.
“You start knowing you are going to come out of the game to keep a streak alive, maybe, that’s not what it is about,” Manning said.
“It’s not a preseason game where you are going to start to the half, the next week a quarter, a series, that’s not fair. That’s not fair to me, not fair to Geno, not how you play.
“You play to win. When you are named the starting quarterback you think it’s your job to go win the football game.
“If you are going to play a little bit, I didn’t think it was the right way to play,” said Manning, who become the Giants starting quarterback 10 games into his rookie season in 2004, which was about a month or so before Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz turned 12 years old.
Manning’s face and eyes got redder the more he talked, adding it’s been a hard day for him and he needs time to figure it out. His session with the media lasted less than four minutes. He then took his backpack and left the locker room.
McAdoo said he made the decision to start Smith over the weekend, and co-owner John Mara and general manager Jerry Reese were in agreement.
McAdoo coach said the organization needed to learn more about Smith and rookie third-round draft pick Davis Webb in the final five weeks of the season.
He refused to say if this was the end of the Manning era with the Giants.
Manning and Smith were told about the decision Tuesday, and later the team was filled in on the verdict.
“It is my responsibility to make sure we have a complete evaluation of the roster, top to bottom, especially the quarterback position moving on to next season and with that we are giving Geno an opportunity to show what he can do,” McAdoo said.
McAdoo also plans to give Webb an opportunity, but probably not this week. Manning will be the backup.
Manning’s streak is the second-longest streak by a quarterback in NFL history, behind Brett Favre’s 297.
He has started every Giants game since Nov. 21, 2004, when he took over for veteran Kurt Warner in the 10th game of his rookie season.
The longest active starting streak at quarterback belongs to the Chargers’ Philip Rivers (187) followed by the Falcons’ Matt Ryan (123) and the Lions’ Matthew Stafford (107).
Manning has also started 12 postseason games, and twice led the Giants to Super Bowl victories.
Texans look ahead
The Texans are trying to regroup and move on after another turnover-filled performance by Tom Savage on Monday night dropped them to 4-7 and made their chances of reaching the postseason slim.
Savage led Houston to a touchdown on the first drive against Baltimore, but the Texans failed to move the ball consistently for the rest of the game and were done in by three turnovers from the quarterback in the 23-16 loss.
“It’s tough. It’s just a terrible feeling. It’s been a season of a lot of those,” coach Bill O’Brien said.“We’re going to look back on it, and I know that we had some opportunities we didn’t take advantage of. We’ll just have to figure out moving forward how to do a better job.”
Running back Darren McFadden has announced his retirement two days after his release by the Dallas Cowboys.
McFadden was the fourth overall pick by Oakland in 2008 out of Arkansas. He finished with 5,421 yards rushing and 28 touchdowns.
He had two 1,000-yard seasons, including 2015 when he led the Cowboys in his first season with them and finished fourth in the NFL with 1,089 yards.
The Patriots say former defensive back Dave Cloutier has died.
The team says Cloutier died Nov. 6 at his home in Palm Coast, Florida, at the age of 78. He was the first Maine native in Patriots history.
Cloutier was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 18th round of the 1962 NFL draft, but he signed a free agent deal with the AFL’s Buffalo Bills.