New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning is retiring after 16 NFL seasons, the team announced Wednesday.
“For 16 seasons, Eli Manning defined what it is to be a New York Giant both on and off the field,” co-owner, president and CEO John Mara said in a statement. “Eli is our only two-time Super Bowl MVP and one of the very best players in our franchise’s history.
“He represented our franchise as a consummate professional with dignity and accountability. It meant something to Eli to be the Giants quarterback, and it meant even more to us. We are beyond grateful for his contributions to our organization and look forward to celebrating his induction into the Giants Ring of Honor in the near future.”
Multiple outlets reported Wednesday that Manning will hold a press conference on Friday.
Manning, who turned 39 on Jan. 3, said after the regular season ended that he planned to discuss his future with family before making a decision. He said, “I think I can still play,” but added he didn’t see a future with the Giants, noting, “Being a backup is not real fun.”
Manning was benched after Week 2 of the regular season in favor of rookie Daniel Jones, a first-round draft pick who went on to start 12 games. Manning filled in for two starts in Weeks 14 and 15 when Jones was injured, winning his final start at home against the Miami Dolphins.
Taken No. 1 overall out of Mississippi in the 2004 draft by the then-San Diego Chargers, Manning said beforehand he would refuse to play for the franchise. He was traded to the Giants later on draft day in a deal that sent Philip Rivers back to the Chargers.
Manning went on to start 234 of 236 games over 16 seasons, all with New York. That included a run of 210 consecutive regular-season starts and 222 in the regular season or playoffs, streaks that rank third and fourth, respectively, among quarterbacks in NFL history.
A four-time Pro Bowler, Manning led the 10-6 Giants from a wild-card berth to a famous upset of the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII following the 2007 season, winning MVP honors. Four years later, he managed the feat a second time, also against the Patriots, with an inspired run through the playoffs despite a 9-7 regular-season finish.
Manning wraps up his career with a 117-117 record as a starter, having completed 60.3 percent of his passes for 57,023 yards, 366 touchdowns and 244 interceptions, with a passer rating of 84.1. His best season came in 2011, when he threw for 4,933 yards, 29 touchdowns and 16 interceptions while averaging a career-high 8.1 yards per attempt.
“We are proud to have called Eli Manning our quarterback for so many years,” co-owner, chairman and executive vice president Steve Tisch said in a statement. “Eli was driven to always do what was best for the team. Eli leaves a timeless legacy with two Super Bowl titles on the field and his philanthropic work off the field, which has inspired and impacted so many people. We are sincerely thankful for everything Eli has given our team and community. He will always be a Giant among Giants.”
The all-time leader in franchise history in virtually every passing category, Manning also ranks first in games played, 20 ahead of Michael Strahan.
—Field Level Media