Quarterback Eli Manning
December 31, 2017
Q: How did it feel hearing fans chant your name as you walked off the field?
A: It felt good just to get the win. After a tough year and a lot of tough games, to get the win and with the situation Ė weíve got a lot of new guys playing today. Receivers, Iíve been working with them for a few weeks, but they made some plays. It wasnít the prettiest game Iíve ever had, but to get this win, feel good for Coach Spags, for all the coaches. Itís not just been tough on players, this is tough on the coaches and the fans and everybody. So, it might not mean a whole lot when you look at it to get the third win, but it does mean something to the players. Guys have been working hard, theyíve been competing, theyíve been giving great effort all year and just to get a win and feel good in the locker room and have some cheers and have some hugs and kind of end this tough year on a good note is special.
Q: How do you think some of the receivers who were recently added to the roster responded to some of their first NFL games ever?
A: Yeah, I thought Hunter [Sharp], obviously got a touchdown, ran a great route, got a touchdown right there, so made some nice plays for us. [Marquise] Bundy, I donít think we got him a catch, we tried to get it to him a few times. So, heís still a young guy, got some learning to do. But I thought Travis [Rudolph] made some plays. We didnít do a whole lot in the second half, but our offensive line started firing it off, I thought played well. There was some popping going on up front, so that was good to see. We ran the ball very well, it started with the second play on a huge run by Orleans [Darkwa].
Q: What did General Manager Dave Gettleman say to you outside the locker room?
A: He just said congratulations and weíll talk soon.
Q: You havenít had a chance to have a longer conversation with Gettleman yet?
A: No, I have not. So, Iím sure weíll talk Ė Iím not sure when soon is, but weíll talk soon.
Q: Are you aware that Gettleman said on Friday that his intention is to have you back as the starter next season?
A: Yeah, I mean I heard what he said Friday. So, again, I just wanted to finish the season and then I knew weíd talk sometime and figure out what direction he wants to go in and hopefully Iím part of that plan.
Q: Is it reassuring to hear something like that from Gettleman?
A: Well, I think weíve just got to see what happens. So, again, when we talk Ė I always think the talks in person are more important than whatís said in the media. So, weíll have a discussion and I look forward to that.
Q: When you walked off the field and waved to the fans, was that an acknowledgement of the uncertainty about your future?
A: No, I always do that at the fans. My family was up there, so Iím usually waving at them and waving at the crowd that was here today, that were calling my name, or chanting, that were here supporting us. So, you always appreciate the fans and especially the fans in a tough year and in this situation. Cold and not playing for much, to show up for this game and cheering the way they did and hanging in there, I appreciate that.
Q: Did you hear the fans chanting your name in the fourth quarter?
A: Yeah, I did, I heard them. And, again, I appreciate all the fans, their support this whole year. Itís been overwhelming and for them to support me, support the team the way they have, itís been special.
Q: Now that the season is over, how difficult has it been for you?
A: Yeah, itís probably been my toughest year of football, I would say. Obviously with the losses, with the injuries, with a benching and coming back and uncertainty and everything going on. But really, the losses more than anything probably. Itís tough, itís tough to prepare every week and to put all the effort into it and to not get the outcomes you want. Especially some heartbreakers that we lost early on in the season and then we kind of started losing some of our personnel. So, itís been tough, but hopefully we learn from it and grow from it.
Q: Is it still your preference to be the Giantsí starting quarterback Week 1 of next season?
A: Yeah, 100 percent. I donít want to go play football anywhere else. This is where I want to play, this is my family, the New York Giants. So, hopefully they feel the same way and we can make that work out.
Q: Are you curious to see if the team selects a quarterback with the number two overall pick in the upcoming draft?
A: Weíll see. Obviously, weíve got a while until April, so weíll know a lot more by then.
Q: How strange was it to start the season with Odell Beckham, Brandon Marshall and Sterling Shepard as the starting wide receivers and then finish the season with who you had today?
A: Yeah, itís tough. You spend all offseason, all summer, training camps, working on your timing, working on your rhythm, working on certain routes and then all the guys that youíve kind of worked those many hours with [got injured]. Now, youíre throwing some routes to guys you havenít thrown yet. Maybe you threw a certain route in practice to Bundy and now youíve got Hunter running into the game. So, you hope they run it the way you think they are, but thereís always a little hesitation, or a little kind of holding it an extra second just to make sure theyíre going to be in the right spot. So, itís hard to be in rhythm and on time with a lot of things, but I thought they hung in there, they did a good job, knew their assignments and were able to make a couple plays for us.