New York Giants coach Pat Shurmur’s final words before breaking up for the summer indicated Big Blue would foster a quarterback competition between Eli Manning and rookie Daniel Jones when training camp opens.
The remarks surprised many following the Giants insisted all spring which Manning remained prepared to start another season.
Manning himself is not influenced by Shurmur. At the Manning Passing Academy, Eli informed NFL Network’s Rhett Lewis Friday that he does not believe he is fighting Jones to keep his job.
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“I mean no, I do not feel like it is a competition,” Manning said in an interview which will air on NFL Network’s Total Access Friday night. “I feel like I’ve got to do my job and I’ve got to compete daily and try to get better each day. That’s the way it’s been my whole life and that’s just the way I’ve always approached practice each day to improve, to earn my place on the team, to earn the respect of the teammates and do it annually.”
Manning doesn’t consider Jones contest and said he’s got no issue nurturing a rookie QB the Giants hope will become another franchise signal-caller.
“We have got new guys and I’m attempting to construct a relationship together and get them up to speed and so I’m trying to perform my job in the quarterback room,” Manning explained. “I have always been great with young quarterbacks, whoever’s been in there, trying to get them up to speed, teaching them about defenses or fashions or what our defense plays. So I am doing exactly the same thing with Daniel and I’m likely to be a good teammate, I’m likely to do the very best I can do and help everybody on the Giants be prosperous.”
Manning’s dismissal of a supposed QB competition similarly echoes Jones’ response to Shurmur’s remarks, when the rookie said he had not been told by coaches he’d have a opportunity to start.
Whether or not it’s a full-blown competition, the repetitions each QB gets when training camp opens July 24 will be closely monitored. A buzz will begin if Jones gets reps with all the 1s early in camp, but Manning doesn’t sound worried about that possibility.
Manning noticed that he remembers his own”competition” with Kurt Warner back in 2004 — that the veteran began the first half of this year before Big Blue turned to Manning to the last seven tilts.
“Definitely drawing back on this and I talk to Daniel and I see so many similarities at the situation and how things are going and just what he is trying to do, his character,” Manning said. “He is coming into this group, he’s only trying to understand the playbook, find out the names of everybody, got to earn the admiration of his teammates. He’s got so much happening. He’s got the New York media, dealing with them; all of a sudden they are saying things Day 1. … So just work hard, take your work seriously, but do not take yourself too seriously — if you can do this — enjoy your teammates, listen to your coaches and we’re all in this together and we will get through it.”
Manning also confessed he has seen the memes indicating Jones is a facsimile of himself, also noticed their personalities are like rookies.
“I see it,” Manning explained. “He’s a good kid, he is silent and he is just trying to understand, get a fantastic sense of when to let his character come out. I was the same way. My newcomer I wasn’t going to say Tiki Barber, Michael Strahan, you got these big characters — I’m just going to keep my mouth closed, be on time, work my tail off in the weight space, ask my questions to the coach after the interview is over and also make sure I understand what I am doing before tell Tiki exactly what his route is or I tell Amani Toomer,’Hey, I don’t believe you did this right.’ You have to earn the respect. You got to get struck in the mouth a couple of times and get up… until you do a great deal of speaking.”
Grab Manning’s interview Friday night on NFL Total Access at 7 p.m. ET.
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