Eli's World: Why Manning Is the Man in the NFL

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Eli's World: Why Manning Is the Man in the NFL
(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

He’s not your typical superstar. He doesn’t have the mobility in the pocket like Ben Roethlisberger. There’s no Hollywood appeal in him like Tom Brady. His press conferences are not as entertaining as Jay Cutlers.

He doesn’t have a glory story like Kurt Warner or fantasy numbers like Drew Brees, but Eli Manning is currently more important to his team than any other quarterback is in the NFL.

The New York Giants opened this season shorthanded to say the least. Key players such as Plaxico Burress, Amani Toomer, and Derrick Ward have all been chopped from the roster.

With no real experience at the skill positions, excluding Brandon Jacobs, the Giants were faced with serious questions and doubts heading into this season.

In the midst of all the worries fans lost sight of the fact that the Giants never lost the man who is most important, Eli Manning.

Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Philip Rivers, Kurt Warner, Ben Roethlisberger, and even Matt Ryan all have pro bowl receivers on their rosters to help take the pressure off the other wide outs and even the quarterbacks themselves.

While there may not be a true No. 1 threat, or a Pro Bowl wide receiver, the $100 million man has shown the world that no matter who surrounds him, his ability to win games and lead his team down the field will never waver.

New York is now undefeated heading into week three; but what’s been the biggest factor for all the success?

The defense is ranked near the bottom of the league in the run defense, and gave up 31 points to Dallas this past week. The running attack on the offensive side of the ball has been no better with only 100 yards per game, ranking them 21st in the NFL.

With hardly any help from the running game, Manning has flourished this season in the pocket, passing for 586 yards while completing over 60 percent of his passes.

His ability to find the open man and spread the wealth has given receivers such as Mario Manningham and Steve Smith a chance to show their worth.

While critics and analysts may laugh at the idea that Manning is more important to his team than any other quarterback is to theirs, here’s a fact: Eli is third in the league in terms of fourth quarter conebacks, behind only Big Ben and older brother Peyton.

This includes the seven-play, 71-yard touchdown drive that sealed the game and ate up the entire 3:57 left on the game clock.

A master of his own destiny is the best way to describe Eli Manning when he is out there on the field. Time and time again, Manning has shown to be most comfortable in the most uncomfortable scenarios.

His composure in the pocket is by far his biggest asset. No matter how important or pressurized the situation is, Manning never changes his approach, and if Manning can continue to to be as efficient as he's been so far, the Giants are poised for another Super Bowl run. 

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