Despite Eli Manning constantly saying he’s not worried about his contract extension, obviously it’s sitting somewhere in the back of his mind, as the New York Giants and him can’t seem to come to an agreement.
While all the negotiation problems we’ve seen this offseason between teams and players have been resolved with massive deals, including for quarterbacks Philip Rivers and Russell Wilson, the Manning thing is cutting it a bit late, with preseason games already in full flow. Manning is a free agent at the end of the season, although the Giants have the option of using the franchise tag.
Manning wants to be the highest paid quarterback in the NFL. Aaron Rodgers on average has the highest salary ($22 million), followed by Russell Wilson ($21.9 million) and Ben Roethlisberger ($21.85 million). Another ‘class of 2004’ member, Philip Rivers, just signed an extension which puts him fourth on that list with $20.8 million per season over the next four years.
Manning is a two-time Super Bowl champion (like Roethlisberger) and also a Super Bowl MVP. Obviously, he has the achievements to back his demands, and despite being 34, he hasn’t missed a start since his rookie season and is coming off what statistically was his best regular season ever. The Giants missed the playoffs for a fourth straight year, but was it his fault?
When Manning signed the deal that’s about to expire, he was turned into one of the highest paid players in the league. He wants to be the highest now. Being in the vicinity is not enough. The problem with Manning has always been the fact that despite his titles, he’s always considered in the second tier of quarterbacks, and the Giants, despite wanting to conclude the negotiations, can’t stop themselves from thinking that they’re better off moving on to someone else, younger and cheaper.