Eli Manning’s job is to “win games,” but he has no problem being mentor

Charean Williams
ProFootball Talk on NBC Sports

The Giants drafted Daniel Jones as the heir apparent, not to sit behind Eli Manning for long. Manning, 38, added an asterisk behind “starting” quarterback the moment the Giants selected the former Duke star with the sixth overall choice.

Manning now is a bridge quarterback, starting until Jones is ready and/or the Giants lose enough games that it becomes more beneficial for Jones to get snaps.

“I understand that I am the quarterback on the Giants and it is my responsibility to go out there and do my job to the best of my ability,” Manning told reporters Monday when asked his approach to his 16th season. “I want to be in this position and be the quarterback. I want to go win games and have a great year.”

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Manning insists there is “no awkwardness” in the quarterbacks room despite the fact the Giants drafted Jones to take his job eventually.

“It is not there. Don’t make something that is not there,” Manning said. “It doesn’t bother me. It is not about being nervous or worried. I am treating it the same that it has been the last 15 years. Whoever is in the quarterback room, talk football. If someone is confused about something or not sure about something, we have a great communication system and a relationship.”

While Joe Flacco said earlier this month it wasn’t his job to mentor Drew Lock, Manning has no problem helping Jones. He did, though, echo Flacco’s sentiment that it isn’t the starting quarterback’s “job” to mentor the backup.

Manning made a great point: The protegee has a responsibility to ask questions and seek help.

“I think I have been doing that for the last 11 or 12 years,” Manning said. “I don’t know exactly when you become a mentor, but when you’ve been in the league longer than any other guy in the room, you should be a mentor in that sense where you know a little bit more. Again, it is not necessarily your job to do it. You are in the quarterback room with all the other quarterbacks and you are talking. Everyone is mentoring everyone. If you aren’t in there, then you can’t be a mentor or mentored. It is a little bit on Daniel to be in there asking questions and everyone willing to help out in those situations.”

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