Archie Manning is like most parents who feel the need to defend their children. Even if their child has done something wrong, many parents will not publicly agree to the allegation. Maybe behind closed doors, but not to people they barely know.
That is why Manning’s defense of his son, Eli, should not come as a surprise.
The well-known father was asked about Eli’s struggles this season on Tuesday. Of course, he did not think Eli should be blamed for New York’s disappointing season.
“That’s one of the problems we have in analyzing football now,” Manning told the Daily News. “We kind of put the quarterback in an individual thing. When Eli led the Giants to championships here, it’s because they had a good team and they ran the ball. They balanced the offense. They got after the quarterback. For various reasons, the Giants haven’t been able to do that this year. And Eli’s done his part — he hasn’t played as good, but the Giants haven’t played as good. I don’t individualize a quarterback.”
Archie forgot to mention that Eli was named the Super Bowl MVP twice, despite the New York’s well-balanced team. People praised New York’s defense and ground game, but Eli was ultimately credited for both victories.
Manning has thrown 20 interceptions, which is tied for the league-lead, and 16 touchdowns this season. He is close to matching his career-high (25 interceptions in 2010). Manning has also thrown multiple interceptions in five games this season.
More importantly, New York has a 5-8 record and was officially eliminated from playoff contention after a 37-14 loss against San Diego on Sunday. Manning was intercepted twice during that loss.
“I don’t put it (on Eli),” Archie Manning told the Daily News. “Everybody is ranting and raving about Peyton (Manning). Peyton is having a good year because the Broncos offense is having a good year. That’s the way I look at it.”
And Denver is having a good year because of Peyton Manning.
Whenever the majority of teams play well, their quarterback is credited with that success. Even if the quarterback is a game manager, like Kansas City’s Alex Smith, he is praised for not making mistakes.
However, when a quarterback struggles, the automatic defense is to point out how football is a team sport. Funny, but that never seemingly comes up during contract negotiations when quarterbacks capitalize on their team’s success, like Baltimore’s Joe Flacco, who signed a $120.6 million extension after his team won the Super Bowl last season.
There is nothing wrong with Archie Manning defending his son, even though Eli deserves a lot of the blame for New York’s disappointing season.
He is just being a parent.
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