Is Eli Manning an elite quarterback?

ESPN’s Jon Gruden gets picked on for excessive praise, but his appreciation for Eli Manning last night felt on point.

One of the most disappointing aspects of the 2009 Giants was that the defense wasted Manning’s best season.  Mentioned on Sports Illustrated’s Most overrated list, we’d make the case it’s the opposite for the younger Manning at this stage of his career.

His accuracy has consistently improved (65% this year), his yards-per-attempt are up, and he’s far more consistent on a week-to-week basis.  With Hakeem Nicks, Steve Smith, and Mario Manningham, the Giants are far more dangerous on offense then when they won the Super Bowl. 

While listening to Gruden and Ron Jaworksi last night, I started to think: What quarterbacks would I rather have than Eli Manning?

Two years ago, a healthy Tony Romo would have made the list.  He wouldn’t now, even before his clavicle injury. Here’s my list of guys I’d rather have running my offense over Eli Manning for this season only.  Tell me where you disagree:

Peyton Manning
Tom Brady
Drew Brees
Philip Rivers
Ben Roethlisberger
Aaron Rodgers

That’s it. Six guys.  Matt Schaub is in the conversation, but falls short. Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco continue to improve, but aren’t there quite yet. Even Sam Bradford and Josh Freeman could pass Manning eventually, but I’d still take Eli’s combination of experience and talent for 2010.  Eli runs an offense; the younger guys are still learning it.

I don’t know what the definition of an “elite” quarterback is, but the No. 7 quarterback in the league sounds pretty close.  Maybe it will take another Super Bowl appearance for Manning to get that sort of recognition.  (The Giants certainly have a shot in this balanced NFC.)

This much I know: Eli Manning is a better player than when he got his ring.

100 responses to “Is Eli Manning an elite quarterback?

  1. “Is Eli Manning an elite quarterback?”
    Hell no!
    Is she an elitist? Hell yes!
    She wouldn’t even be a starter in the league if her last name wasn’t Manning.

  2. Did you see the way Eli destroyed the cowboys blitzes. He looked like peyton out there the way he ran the offense in such a methodical way.
    A problem with eli is that he starts off games to antsy and erratic thus throwing some high balls which the receivers tip to become picks

  3. How Sam Bradford and Josh Freeman get on the “could” list with Sanchez being left off? I don’t think either of those two guys are or will be in Manning’s class because I think that highly of Manning, but it’s silly to put those two young guys a class ahead of Sanchez.

  4. I’m not sure if he’s an “elite” QB……but…….I do know that he’s not an “Old”…..”Creepy”…..”Douche”.

  5. No, he’s not.
    In 5 full seasons, only 1 4000-yard season, only 1 10-INT or less season, 0 30-TD seasons, only 2 60% completion seasons, only 1 season with a 2:1 TD:INT ratio, only 1 season with a 7 YPA, only 1 season with a 90+ QB rating.
    Those aren’t elite numbers. Hell, there’s only 2-3 elite QBs in the NFL (Brady and Manning for sure, Brees is teetering on the edge after his start this year). Eli is a top 10 QB, a good QB, but not anywhere close to elite.

  6. Elite would be the top 2-3 QBs in the NFL. Eli is a very good QB and in the top 10, but not elite.
    I’d say its not really based on stats so much, as it is just a feeling of who’s really “Elite.” To me, Brady and Payton are the only two in the category. Brees would be a possibility if he was playing like he did last year..
    And how can you want Philip Rivers over Eli? can SD win a few playoff games for once?

  7. I know there will always be the rivers and manning debate because of the trade, but put eli in that horrible AFC west his whole career and not the NFC east and lets look at his numbers. Rapleisberger plays weaker competition too. The excuses are kind of ridiculous already. Eli is going to be the worst QB in the league without Plaxico, meanwhile he has flourished. People see them lose and blame eli, their defense was putrid last yr, not him. Then well go to his INT’s this yr, if anyone has watched all of the giant games this yr, he has maybe 3 or 4 at most legit picks, the rest have been off his wr’s hands. Now the knock is, he is lucky to have these young wr’s to save him. Can we put an end to that? which is it? eli is horrible without Plax and now its eli is lucky to have those wr’s, has it ever occurred to anyone that any wr he plays with does an excellent job. Cue the retarded younger brother comments, but truth be told, he is absolutely nasty when they are trailing by a few, tied or need a score to win in the last few mins of the game. NFC east fans can say what they want, but if they arent slightly afraid of eli throwing against them, then they are on crack.

  8. OK – what exactly has aaron rodgers done to make this list. i’d argue against rivers, too because he has done nothing in his career in the post season. but he at least has some sort of body of work to go with.
    rodgers ahead of eli i just dont get it

  9. Eli has been underrated for years, it’s funny reading all the negative talk about him from people who don’t watch him play on a weekly basis… The guy just wins games. After we win the super bowl this year maybe he’ll get the respect he deserves.

  10. I am not a fan of either Manning, but I would put him ahead of Rivers, maybe not talent wise but there is something about Rivers that makes me think he is not a leader at all and that is a big part of being an elite QB.

  11. Not even close. I’d rather have Schaub, Big Ben, etc. To me, despite an impressive Super Bowl game in 2007, Eli Manning is a very pedestrian QB who benefits from an aggressive defense and mostly-effective 2-head rushing game.

  12. I’m a hardcore Giants fan, but I don’t think he’s an elite QB, at least not this season. Sure, he has a nice completion % and YPA, but look at all the turnovers credited to his name. He’s already in double-digit INT’s, has a few fumbles. I think 7-8 of the INT’s have been tipped, but he’s been throwing them high and in a position where it’s difficult for the receiver to make a catch.

  13. On your list of elites i would slide A-Rod off move rivers to the bottom and put Big Ben where rivers was and slide Eli right in his spot. I would only do that because the the top 5 have rings, while if you were to switch Rivers with any of the other Quarterbacks the teams wouldnt miss a beat. Dont get me wrong Rodgers is real good but not elite yet, he needs that one big W. And yes you may all say that he got it Sunday night, but a signature win is “you have the ball with 2 min to go down by 4 and 80 yards to go, and you get it done.” Not, “watch on the sidlines and hope your defense makes enough plays to stop the other team from doing the same thing.” And everyone may say im crazy but after Rodgers i would put Favre. Yes he threw 3 INT’s But the only throw that would have been rememberd would have been the one where either Harvin comes down in bounds, or Moss Comes down with the last one, so theres still some magic left in that bruised, battered, and broken body after all, and if the other 6 QB’s were taken i would take Favre in a heartbeat.

  14. # Majik Bullet says: October 26, 2010 11:22 AM
    I’d put Eli in the top 5. Definitely ahead of Big Ben, and a slight edge over Rodgers.
    Roethlisberger = 62-26
    Manning = 55 – 39
    Career QB Rating
    Ben = 92.4
    Eli = 79.9
    Career Yards per Attempt
    Ben = 8.1
    Eli = 6.2
    Career Completion %
    Ben = 63.3
    Eli = 57.7
    Ben = 132/82
    Eli = 139/99
    Super Bowl wins
    Ben = 2
    Eli = 1
    Playoff Stats
    Ben = 8-2, 87.2 QB rating, 15 td’s
    Eli = 4-3, 77.6 QB rating, 8 td’s
    Ben is a FAR superior player in every measure….

  15. As a Giants fan, I wouldn’t call Eli elite but I do think your list of “rather have’s” is pretty good. Some will call out his int’s this year but if you watch the games… i cannot remember any team that has had so many deflections off receivers hands that end up as picks. It’s really unbelievable, probably more than 1/2 those picks were deflections off his own guys hands.
    I don’t know if its just a bad stretch of luck, I mean it like almost every deflection is a pick… really odd.
    So… elite, not yet but hard to say I would rather have someone else other than the guys on your list. He has definitely shown improvement in reading defenses and calling motion/audibles forcing them to provide exploitable info pre-snap.
    Sad thing is two guys on your list were from the same draft class. Although I think NYC media would rip Rivers and Ben apart. Easy E has the perfect demeanor for dealing with the NYC spotlight

  16. It seems like on his own he isn’t very good but if he executes a game plan that outsmarts the opponent he looks very good. When under pressure and the gameplan goes out the window requiring him to improvise and gunsling is when he looks like a scrub. The cowboys were out coached last night and he looked good.

  17. How can you say that Roethlisberger has played against weaker competition? Just because the Browns are in his division?
    In 2008, the Steelers had what was rated before the season as one of the most difficult schedules ever. Last year, they caught a break (and lost to all of those terrible teams…guh). Eli gets the benefit of playing against NFC teams that struggle to lace up their own cleats before games. You NFC East fans need to stop overrating the Cowboys. And the Redskins.


  19. Gregg…..clearly you need to watch the 4-letter network a bit more…..we are the Kings of H.Y.P.E.
    Jimmy Clausen is the greatest quarter back ever. I stand by that even without Gary Wichard greasing my hairy palms.
    Thanks Bunches,
    Helmet Head Kiper

  20. There’s no way he’s ahead of Ben. Eli’s never sniffed a rating of 100 for a season. Ben’s topped it twice and came very close two other times. He’s also carrying a 122 this season.

  21. It’s a good list, and pretty-much in the right order too. I’d possibly bump Rodgers up a couple notches, but otherwise it’s right on.
    Eli at #7 makes up the bottom of the elite group, I’d say. There’s still gap between him and Flacco, Ryan, etc, and I’d say Eli is improving over time. I think he could be up in the top 4 at some point (and no, I’m not a Giants fan.)

  22. Presently, there are only two elite quarterbacks in the NFL: Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. Ben Roethlisberger is “knocking on the door” and will likely join Manning and Brady at some future point. The others, though very talented, are not in the same category. And “Lord” Favre is past his prime. Period. End of story.

  23. No he’s NOT an elite QB… you failed to mention McNabb… his overall #’s are better than the majority of the guys you listed… granted he’s STRUGGLING thus far this year, but he’s winning games.

  24. Two years ago, a healthy Tony Romo would have made the list. He wouldn’t now, even before his clavicle injury.
    Because you’re an asshat.
    He was on pace for 5,000 yds and 32 TD’s before Monday Night. You can’t blame Dallas’ 1-4 start on him: he aint the one who called a play before half-time against WASH, and he ain’t the one blowing defensive coverage on a weekly basis.
    Don’t be a moron. The guy has clearly been an elite QB, and was playing quite well this year.

  25. Face it, if he had a different last name other then Manning, he’d be in the Top 5. Won a super Bowl, has went 10-6, 13-3, 8-8 last season (mostly cause the defense was shot and the run game was garbage), and is at 5-2 this season.
    Rodgers has always had great WR, Roethlisberger has that nasty defense that won the one Super Bowl for him, Rivers hasn’t won anything, and Brees has put together one really good season.
    All these play in a divison with at least 2 gimme games if not more for the past couple seasons.
    Rodgers has Lions, Roethlisberger has Browns/bengals, Rivers has Oakland, and Brees has Tampa Bay/Falcons (pre-Matt Ryan). Even Brady and Peyton have the Bills and a mixture of the Titans/Texans/Jags.
    Eli has 3 good teams that always play hard no matter what their record is. You never get a gimme game in the NFC east.
    Eli is an elite QB hands down.

  26. Erin Rodgers? Really?? He is 2-11 lifetime in games decided by 4 points or less. o wins in the playoffs and has yet to QB his team to a division title. He puts up nice fantasy football numbers though.
    I’ll take Eli right now 10 out of 10 times and twice on Sundays!

  27. The eternal debate. The enigma that is Eli Manning. OK, here’s the truth. He’s a very good starting NFL QB. Steady… solid… and obviously you can win a Superbowl with him.
    There are a lot of NFL teams who would love… LOVE… a QB like this.
    I don’t really care if he’s in some vague group called ‘elite’. Nor do I care if he makes the Pro Bowl or goes to the Hall of Fame.
    Because of him we haven’t had a QB issue for 7 years… and won’t for 7 more.
    Go ahead… dump on him if you like… but how’s your team doing? How’s your QB situation?

  28. @ jkorn1818
    I have no problem calling Eli a great QB – but to say he is better than Roethlisberger because Ben plays “weak competition” is a total joke. Other than the Giants, the NFC East hasn’t produced a strong defensive team in a decade. Certainly no one even close to the level of the Ravens on any given year. That is a highly, highly suspect claim.

  29. # ttboy says: October 26, 2010 11:28 AM
    Eli has been underrated for years, it’s funny reading all the negative talk about him from people who don’t watch him play on a weekly basis… The guy just wins games. After we win the super bowl this year maybe he’ll get the respect he deserves.
    Whenever I see “The guy just wins games”, all that means is you can’t actually back it up with anything. Eli’s DEFENSE wins far more games than he does. They did in 2007 when they won the Super Bowl, holding the best scoring offense of all-time to 14 points, and they’re doing it this year. They’ve already forced 20 turnovers yet the team is -5 in TO differential. Eli alone has 6 fumbles and 11 INTs.

  30. Playmaker’s Dealer- The Cowboys would probably be at least 3-3 with Mark Sanchez as their QB. Romo’s personality is clearly more suited to play the game he truly loves, golf. I guarantee you the dude is more bummed that his clavicle injury is going to keep him off the course rather than the field.
    No way should Rivers be on this list either. At this point, I’d rather have Freeman on my team rather than that whining clown.

  31. If the definition of “elite QB” is leading his team and running an offense efficiently, Eli is definitely top 5. He runs his offense and wins big games much better than Rodgers or Rivers.
    I would consider Peyton, Brees and Brady the elite QBs, with Ben and Eli not too far behind, in that order.

  32. Until he finally got the boot in Chicago, Rex Grosman & Eli were having the same careers.
    Big deal.
    He is overrated but he is Peyton’s brother and that one great catch in the Super Bowl just kept the hype machine rolling.

  33. # themage78 says: October 26, 2010 11:47 AM
    Eli is an elite QB hands down.
    Eli Manning’s career QB rating is 79.9, which ranks him 21st out of the QB’s currently in the NFL. I’m guessing there are 20 other “elite” QB’s right?
    If his name WASN’T Manning we wouldnt even be having this conversation…

  34. I think you’re bang on with your list.
    Before last year I would have scoffed at Eli ever being considered an elite QB but he has really improved. He’s definitely in the conversation now.

  35. And Eli is a solid citizen. He’s not a punk like Rivers… or a serial rapist like Ben. It might not show up in the stats… but at least Giant fans don’t have to go through all sorts of mental gymnastics to justify rooting for him.

  36. Eli Manning elite? Laughable.
    Fun fact: Jake Delhomme has a higher career passer rating than Eli Manning.
    Is Delhomme elite?
    Before you start bringing up “Eli Manning won a super bowl,” think about the fact that it takes an entire team to win the SB and that Trent Dilfer won a Super Bowl as well.

  37. Pushing the definition of “elite” out to the seventh best quarterback seems like a stretch, but I’ll play along.
    Eli is wildly inconsistent and that’s been the case THIS year. He was terrible against Indy and Tennessee. Every time he has two good games in a row, commentators sing his praises, then he marches out the next week and lays an egg. He will face Seattle in two weeks and revert back to his mediocre self, mark my words.
    I would add to your list Favre, Romo, Schaub, McNabb and Vick as better than him, with a handful of others his equal. He is between the 12th to the 16th best quarterback in the league. Far from “elite”and let’s not forget that he is on pace to throw 25 interceptions THIS year.

  38. Is Eli Manning an elite QB? The answer to that question is no. Eli Manning may not even be the best QB in the NFC East Divivsion (Donovan McNabb).
    First, when a QB wins a Super Bowl most are escalated to super star status by the media irrespected of what was done previously in their career ( The New York media does a terrific job of elevating Eli above the level of play that is his on the field performance).
    Second, elite QB’s are QB’s that consistently over the course of given season puts the team on his back and carries said team within and outside the scope of their offensive sytem. Eli Manning is NOT that guy. If Ahmad Bradshaw or Bradon Jacobs are ineffective so is Eli Manning.
    Eli Maning has been an up and player that is more average and much more closer to just below Franchise QB than elite since the Super Bowl run of the New York Giants in 07. Eli is not unlike Peyton Manning and is more likely to throw a pick and melt down (left handed pass against the Titans a few weeks back) in a big spot than take a team to places it may not otherwise be able to get to. Playoff record of Eli is 4-3. Puttting that in perspective Eli is o-3 in playoff game in 05, 06 and 08. His career completion % is a pedestrian 57.7% (elite is at 65 to 68%). Eli has just 1 Pro Bowl on his resume. His leadership style is also highly questionable.
    Eli Manning is not in the discussion if you are talking elite QB’s in this league.

  39. Ranking Eli over Favre? I assume leaing Favre out was a typo? Say what you want about the guy, but he is still a PROVEN, FUTURE HOF quarterback who can still throw the ball as good as ANYONE in the league when he brings it.
    Eli an elite quarterback? Are you kidding me? Eli’s career was defined by a FLUKE Super Bowl win in which a LUCKY hail mary was caught by a scrub WR who is now out of the NFL and working at K-Mart.
    Eli accomplished NOTHING prior that game and has accomplished NOTHING since.
    Just the facts!

  40. “I know there will always be the rivers and manning debate because of the trade, but put eli in that horrible AFC west his whole career and not the NFC east and lets look at his numbers”
    Correct me if I’m wrong JKorn…but didn’t Rivers sweep the NFC East last year? And how’d he do against the Giants? Oh, that’s right, phenomenal. He even rushed for half of our yards, because Tomlinson was his usual 2009 self…12 rushes, 22 yards.
    Also, don’t forget, Rivers picked on Asomougha and Bailey in their primes. He never tried to avoid them…that’s the mark of a truly elite QB.

  41. Nice list Gregg and as a G-Men fan, thank you for showing some Eli love.
    For those looking at career numbers, stop. Re-read the article and see Gregg was referencing THIS YEAR only.
    Watching Eli from day 1, it has been awesome to see his development and chillllll factor. Yes, he makes you crazy sometimes and yes his receivers are young and have inflated his INT stats. But, he has gotten exponentially more accurate and has become a true leader of the team. Until Rivers and Rogers win a championship, I wouldn’t put them ahead of Eli.

  42. “Is Eli Manning an elite quarterback?”
    He’s a Super Bowl MVP. He took down the mighty 18-0 Patriots. His highlight passes will be played on Super Bowl documentary shows pretty much forever, or until the world ends
    He’s all-time elite – why would you even ask a question like that?
    And I don’t even particularly like him or his team

  43. Krow says: Eli is solid citizen…. but at least Giant fans don’t have to go through all sorts of mental gymnastics to justify rooting for him.
    I’ll give you the solid citizen. He’s married and stays out of trouble. I don’t think I’ve ever read anything negative about him off the field, and believe me, I’m jealous your team has a quiet off-season. Heck, I’m jealous of all the teams with quiet off-seasons.
    But his brother is funnier in commercials 🙂

  44. No!…..above average at best. if not for a spectacular catch by David Tyree, you dont even have that misleading SB ring to point to in this debate. (trent dilfer has one too) thank you Wonka for pointing out the glaring differences in the ACTUAL ACCOMPLISHMENTS of Ben and Eli. Stats dont lie, but Giant fans and the media kool-aid machine sure will!

  45. Add hard working, well prepared and durable.
    His teammates on both sides of the ball seem to want to run through a brick wall for him.
    I think Eli will lead the Giants to a couple of more superbowls and be in Canton someday.
    In Eli I Trust.

  46. For Krow
    I could not have said it better. Eli is a solid citizen
    When I watch my team the stealers I have to hold my nose

  47. Definitely, and anyone in disagreement is probably a Redskin, Eagle, or especially Cowboy fan envious that his age and ability to already win a championship makes the Giants’ QB situation the best in that division. For all the
    bouquets that are thrown Romo’s way, Eli’s the guy with the ring, the playoff wins, and the 4th quarter comebacks in his career. McNabb, while I think underappreciated over the years, is old and close to the end. Between Vick and Kolb, I still don’t know what philly has there yet, although I’m pretty sure that Kolb won’t be winning any championships.
    Also, you have to take into consideration the New york market and how it breaks QBs. Depending on what Mark Sanchez does with the rest of his career, there have been only 2 other successful guys in that city between 2 franchises, and there hasn’t necessarily been a Favre or Marino who was with either of those teams during those 40+ years. Even Fran Tarkenton, a Hall of Famer, failed in New york. Just like every guy can’t play with the Yankees, it holds true for the football franchises as well, so you have to take that into consideration when evaluating Eli’s place in the game.

  48. I’d put Big Ben below Eli simply for the reason that you know Eli isn’t going to do stupid crap to hurt your team away from the field.
    Also about 8 of Eli’s INT’s this year come from passes his receivers have had hit their hands to end up in the defenders arms.
    “Before you start bringing up “Eli Manning won a super bowl,” think about the fact that it takes an entire team to win the SB and that Trent Dilfer won a Super Bowl as well.”
    Dilfer won a superbowl completing only 50% for 153 yards (nearly a third of which came on 1 play) and 1 TD. Eli won a superbowl by completing more then 50% for 255 yards with 2 touchdowns and 1 int that was on Steve Smith. Not to mention Eli had a good lead up to the Superbowl.

  49. “Ben is a FAR superior player in every measure….”
    Which one won a Super Bowl MVP and which one turned in the worse performance by a winning QB in Super Bowl history (22.6 passer rating against the “legendary” Seattle pass defense)? So, hyperbole aside, your statement is wrong.
    Check the records of the AFC North teams against those of the NFC East SINCE Ben and Eli came into the League. Talking about their entire careers, not one year. BTW – Which one beat the only 18-0 team in history to win the Super Bowl? You’re a female Pittsburgh fan and it’s after 12pm, so I understand it’s hard for you to think when you probably have a case of beer and three boxes of Twinkies sloshing around your huge gut by now.

  50. Manning and the Giant’s beat the lowly 1-4(now 1-5) Cowboys by 6 and he’s elite??? No!
    And, someone mentioned McNabb… why isn’t McNabb on that list??? He’s certainly one of the top 3-4 QB’s currently playing. And, he has years of solid history too!
    Eli’s only accomplishment is not losing the SB for the Giant’s a few years ago. The Giant’s D won that game hands down! He was on the roster and got a ring, sure enough. But, Oh See Human Urine, and Justin Tuck have much more to brag about from that game that Eli…

  51. All you people that throw numbers up, all you people who are fans of other teams, prob dont watch every Giants game that comes on tv. “Oh Eli threw 11 picks already” didnt watch every pass bounce off of hands,through hands,and land in opposing teams grasp. Throw your statistics on here before you click “submit” so you look smart and show that you know the game….. Two things make a Qb elite.
    Making changes at the line when they read the D, and throwing the ball in between two hands of a guy who is wearing the same jersey as he is.
    Thats their job,and he does it each week.
    Qb ratings…please.

  52. QBs I’d rather have than Eli:
    Brady, Peyton, Rodgers, Brees, Rivers, Schaub, Romo, Ryan.
    He’s a competent starter which is a definate commodity in the NFL, but that doesn’t make him elite by a good stretch. I think there are some tiers here: 1-5, 6-8, 7-12 and he falls in that 3rd tier. That’s still in the top third of all starting QBs, but again, not elite.

  53. Skins fan here and I can’t stand the Giants, but SI putting Eli on that list is rediculous. I would kill to have Eli on the Skins. What’s he have to do, win another SB so that he has one more than Peyton. Well, this might be the year he does it. The Giants are the best team in the NFC this year IMO.

  54. I would NOT include Aaron Rogers on that list at this point in time and certainly Eli is better than Rogers.
    Rogers may be better than the other seconds you mentioned but seriously, Flacco? Does he even qualify for anything?
    Schaub is the only other QB I’d consider on that list but he has been inconsistent.
    I never would have had Romo on that list. He has never produced, period.

  55. Elite
    Well that is a lot to say but is he better then some on the list hell yes
    Ben how well would he be doing with out a great D and a running game?
    Rivers what has he done other then meaningless stats
    Brees not looking so good with out a running game how about them bowns
    Rodgers again other then meaningless stats what has he done barely beat the Viqueens
    Payton Brady hell yeah they do it year in and year out with what ever rag tag bunch they have no great D no big name backs
    Those two are Elite the rest are ok
    8 of Eli’s Ints were tips off the hands of the guys that get paid to catch the ball.
    What does Eli do he wins that is what a QB should do not have huge stats but have wins look at it like this who would you want in a two minute drill down by 6 Payton Brady and Eli
    Eli is young compared to Payton and Brady give him sometime and he may be right there with them.
    May not have the best stats but will have the best Win Loss record
    Rivers sits in SD so he throws and throws come Nov and Dec in the Meadowlands you run the ball its wet its windy its cold that is how you win running the ball.
    I have been very happy for the past 7 years and hope Eli is around for 7 more

  56. # andyprough says: October 26, 2010 12:19 PM
    “Is Eli Manning an elite quarterback?”
    He’s a Super Bowl MVP. He took down the mighty 18-0 Patriots. His highlight passes will be played on Super Bowl documentary shows pretty much forever, or until the world ends
    He’s all-time elite – why would you even ask a question like that?
    The fact the question exists is proof enough he’s not anywhere close to all-time elite.
    He didn’t take down the Pats; their defense did. Their defense held the NFL’s all-time best scoring offense to 14 points. Eli and the offense scored 17 points, 6 points fewer than their average. Brady was sacked 5 times; he was sacked only 21 times in the regular-season.
    Eli had 1 highlight pass in the Super Bowl and the reason it’s remembered is due to David Tyree. When you see replays, they rarely show the throw; it’s almost always the catch. And forget all that, when did 1 play make you elite? Is Tyree elite due to his involvement?
    There have been 44 Super Bowl MVPs. Are all 44 elite? I didn’t think so.
    These are just terrible arguments.

  57. UBB says:
    October 26, 2010 11:47 AM
    Erin Rodgers? Really?? He is 2-11 lifetime in games decided by 4 points or less. o wins in the playoffs and has yet to QB his team to a division title. He puts up nice fantasy football numbers though.
    I’ll take Eli right now 10 out of 10 times and twice on Sundays!
    Are you retarded or something?!?!?!
    Rogers is indeed 2-11 games decided by 4 points or less. However ever notice thaton all but 2 or 3 where not his fault. Crosby missing a GW FG in Minnisota in 08, Crosby missing a GW FG in Chicago in 08, scoring the go ahead TD in Tampa in 08 only to let the defence give it away.
    Do your homework before you make a stoopid statement.

  58. Eli is top 10 no doubt, deff pushing the top 5 if not there yet. Peyton and Brady have a lock on the top two spots, possibly even as just a 1a and 1b type situation. Brees is most likely the number 3 especially after his Superbowl win last year. After that really becomes a tossup with people just defending Qbs that they personally prefer. I’d prob give Big Ben the 4th spot due to solid stats and 2 rings, followed by Rodgers (though could be biased there as I am a Green Bay fan). After that I would put Eli, but if he continues to play the way he has the past few weeks he has the ability to move up this list fast.
    P.S. In defense of Rodgers, I am aware he has a terrible record in games decided by less than a touchdown, but look at the numbers and how many of those losses has he actually either (a) had the ball last or (b) not already put up a ton of points that the defense blew for him. Still with this in mind at the end of the season it is possible Eli will pass him as a QB and this still coming from a Packer fan

  59. 1.”Elite” according to QB Rating?
    No. Cassel, Delhomme, Jason Campbell, Hasselback, Cutler, Flacco, Garrard, etc… all have higher QB ratings among his contemporaries. Only a few are lower. Vick and Orton are lower.
    2. “Elite” according to completion percentage? No. Eli’s is 57.7%. Only a few are lower. Nearly all his contemporaries complete more passes than him. Alex Smith doesn’t, if it’s any consolation.
    3. How about interception percentage? No again. His 3.3% rate is the equal of Rothisberger and Favre, but only better than about four current starters.
    Eli Manning has a Super Bowl ring and a career win-loss record of 50-37, which is pretty good, but I don’t think he’s an elite quarterback. He’s about as good as Vinnie Testeverde was, but with a more patient head coach and a better team.

  60. No Eli is not but he’s pretty good SOMETIMES! That’s his only downfall. He not consistant enough.
    1. P. Manning
    2. Brees
    3. Big Ben
    4. Brady (Is it just me but Brady is just not the same Brady of old)
    5. Rivers/Rogers

  61. I love seeing all the biased Eagles, Skins, Cowboys, Jets, etc fans here who bash Eli and probably don’t watch him play often. What quarterbacks could come back from those first two tipped interceptions being down 10-0 in the first 4 minutes of the game in a hostile environment.
    Steeler Lady,
    the Colts and Patriots aren’t in the Steelers division genius. The Browns, Ravens, and Bengals are in the same division. Which teams are more talented the Ravens, Browns, and Bengals or the Eagles, Redskins, and Cowboys. Your an idiot.

  62. Elite qbs do not throw 11 interceptions in 7 games in good weather. He is on track to throw 25 ints, and that is awful unless your gonna throw 50 tds.
    You just have to look at his stats when he plays decent teams as compared to the 1-5 cowboys and the 0-6 panthers.
    3 tds and 6 interceptions against the colts and titans which were both losses, enough said!

  63. @Playmaker’s Dealer says:
    October 26, 2010 11:44 AM
    Romo “was on pace for 5,000 yds and 32 TD’s before Monday Night.”
    Does that fuzzy math mean that a QB who throws for 380 yards and 4 TD’s the first game of the season is “on pace” for 6,000 yards passing, and 64 TD passes for the regular season?

  64. If this question wasn’t in the fantasy football age, there would be little question that Eli is an elite QB.
    Would anyone have said that Terry Bradshaw was not elite when he played? Not very many.
    Give me wins, preparation, leadership, stability, and championships anyday. You can have your 4,000 yard passing seasons, 70% completion percentage, and early summer vacations.
    I’d maybe take Peyton, Brady and Brees over Eli on any given week. The rest of the guys you list are a coinflip (Rivers, Ben & Rodgers). I like them all for different reasons, but as a Giants fan I’d never go back and change the 2004 draft to get Rivers or Ben over Eli.
    My favorite thing about Eli is that I’m pretty sure he could give a flip whether anyone considers him elite. He just wants to win games.

  65. Shocking, you know, that at most, only 12 guys in the entire WORLD play the game of football at a level that it was intended to be played at. Might add Favre onto the list a year ago. Got to put Eli into a second tier, all the rest, though, including McNabb and Romo, maybe Cutler at some point, falling into the third tier. So, at best 15 or 16 guys in the world! Leaving 16 so-so QBs helming the remainder of 32 teams. That equals a lot of pissed off fans willingly paying hundreds or thousands of dollars to attend what amounts to glorified college football games. The NFL is a fraud.

  66. Eli is better than Aaron Rodgers and Philip Rivers. Period… Just because a team has no running game, and the QB is forced to throw the ball, doesn’t mean he’s better than Eli.
    And stop with the David Tyree talk. The dude drove down the field on the Pats Defense and scored the game winning touchdown. It wasnt a miraculous catch, he read the D and made the call at the line.
    When it mattered most. The rest of your turd QBs can rack up whatever stats they want.. Show me the rings you little bitches!

  67. Eli is an elite QB. The vast majority of his INT’s this season as passes through the hands of receivers. While those passes may not has been his most accurate they should be catches. The receivers early game jitters are as much to blame as Eli’s early erratic passes. No way do I put Roethlisberger ahead of Eli though. I would say he should sit behind Brees on that list, Rodgers and Rivers don’t have a superbowl.

  68. If Eli Manning played in 90’s he would be Vinnie Testeverde, as I said.
    If he played in the 80’s he would be Doug Williams.
    If he played in the 70’s he would be, uh, Bert Jones maybe? Nah. Craig Morton? Hm, no. Wait, of course, I know. He’d be Archie Manning.

  69. I love the way guys that put numbers out there. Especially some #’S for QB’s in easier divisions.
    I define great or elite QB as a guy who takes his team in big games and wins it. more than once e.g. Montana, Elway, Unitas, Manning, brady, Big Ben, and an even the great Terry. Not Farve! count on him to throw a int at the end of game. He should also have the record for that. Bottom line. Currently…..
    Big Ben
    Are better then Eli, but after that you pick.
    Drew- #’s QB great coach with great schemes and a good defense weak running game QB puts alot of #s (last year-this year a different ballgame). Would I put the ball in his hands with two minutes left and ask him to win a superbowl. Not!
    Rogers- You are kiding! #’s and systems quarterback. Does not know what an audible is? explains why he gets sack alot.
    Rivers- Tuff guy. Does not know what winning a big game means. To be a leader of your team your team has to like and respect you.
    Romo- Need I say more?
    Those people hating on Eli are the same people who said when buress got locked up that was the end of Eli. Since then he has continue to improve with WR that would not even be starting in most teams. How ironic…..

  70. Eli is a good QB, not Elite. He is not better than Big Ben or Aaron Rodgers, Rivers and him are a coin flip. HE throws too many INT’s, I do not care who is at fault, they are turn overs. One or two extra I say okay but 14 tds and 11 ints, sorry not cutting it.

  71. @ east96st
    Eli is not better than Ben. Wonka 2 clearly proved that with this post. And no one cares about one bad game (Seahawks Superbowl). We’re judging entire careers, not one game. So basically what you are saying with you’re dumb argument is that Eli had one great game in his career (Superbowl MVP) and Ben had one horrible game. Therefore Eli is better than Ben – ignore every other game and all other stats. There is no way any GM or coach would take Eli over Ben (unless you think he will harass another woman).
    LASTLY. East 96th street is a dump.

  72. @ the curtain.
    Your are right Ben is better than Eli. But not by much. Also, GM’s would take in account on the team they have and which would be a better fit. They both have two different styles. One great game Eli had? wrong……. You forget @ Dallas (playoff) @ Green Bay(playoff -30) all come from behind and underdogs. Also, many more I have witness during his tenure including last night.

  73. Hey The Curtain – you gotta admit, despite the physical gitedness and even superiority Ben has over most of his competitors in the NFL, that character isuue is REAL and it’s a threat to whatever team he’s on. Worse, those things don’t just go away – they almost always have a way of re-surfacing at just the wrong time..

  74. It’s an interesting question because earlier this season, I’d have said hell no. Now, he seems to be getting his act together once again. I’d have to say he’s top 10… top 5 is hard, he still throws a bunch of picks. 3 in a game isn’t something true elite QB’s do too often. Peyton doesn’t do that, and he defines elite QB in the NFL today.

  75. Elite, elite, elite.
    I played HS football and I couldn’t QB. There are 1000’s of HS teams across the US. The best of those QBs go to 100’s of colleges across the US. The best of those, every year, try to get into the NFL, and only the best of the best do. If you are a 3rd string QB in the NFL, you are an elite QB. Is Eli among the best of the NFL QBs? I tend to think of the best of anything as the top 10% and the elite as the top 5%. If each team has 3 QBs x 32 teams = 96 NFL QBs. 10% =10 (9.6); 5% = 5 (4.8) NFL QBs. Is Eli among the top 5 QBs? No. Is he among the top 10? I think he’s very close.

  76. As a Patriots fan I can say that Eli Manning got zero respect from me until the regular season loss to New England in 2007, when he put the fear of God in the Patriots as he slugged it out with them during their 16-0 season. The kid did everything you could have asked of him and he damn near won that game, and it was a performance for the ages. He backed it up with the Super Bowl win.
    Is he consistent in his skills? No, not yet. When he performs at that level consistently, you can call him “Elite”. What does “Elite” mean? It means you can stand toe to toe in a discussion with any of the very best of the best……. Montana, Unitas, Starr, Bradshaw.
    Brady and Peyton have that. With either of them, you just know they can make that last come-from-behind march down the field, your lead is never safe. Roethlisberger, good as he is, never will. Eli, doesn’t look like he ever will either, though he’s pretty damned good. Rivers is probably as good a passer, but he just never finishes those key drives that win you playoff games and titles. At least Eli has that.

  77. forget about where everyone stands in the pecking order.what i’m looking for in a quarterback is the guy who can get it done when crunch time arrives.
    just look at mcnabb and favre,when everything is on the line.their natural tendancy is to choke.look at mcnabb in the superbowl,look at favre in the 2008 championship game.
    eli can be haphazard in the game but when crunch time arrives,he bears down to the task at hand,i love to watch flash,just a very powerful drive to win.a winner,albeit sloppy some times but a winner.

  78. Eli is not an elite QB, but is the best of the “VERY GOOD” group of QB’s, and thus is a sure fire top 10 QB in the league. People have been saying the same things about him for years. But those people are lazily relying on their opinion from 3 and four years ago to judge him now. Say what you want about him, but he has improved each year and will only continue to improve. Currently he is tied for the league lead in TD’s with some guy named Brees. Sure he has 11 interceptions.. But hell, Brees has 10, and Mighty Aaron Rodgers has 9 (but with two less touchdowns). Not to mention, Eli is 6th in the NFL in Passing Yards. And to top it off, the Giants are tied for 1st in the NFC and their losses are to opponents with a combined record of 9-4. Thats nearly a 70% winning percentage. So… not sure what the debate is all about…. Rosenthal is dead on with his opinion.

  79. Playmaker’s Dealer says:
    October 26, 2010 11:44 AM
    Romo “was on pace for 5,000 yds and 32 TD’s before Monday Night.”
    Since we are playing fuzzy math games, Romo was also on pace for a 3-13 record.
    @wlubake- I couldn’t have said it any better. I agree with you 100%.
    @Steelersmichelle- c’mon…Peyton is funny with “It’s on like Donkey Kong” but Eli stole that commercial with “Ooooooh, we’re scared”. And he was the star of the one where he locked Peyton in the closet before their game. On second thought Peyton was damn funny on SNL with his United Way skit and the Sprint moustache commercial : )

  80. @PlaymakersDealer-
    Romo is way overrated, as is the Cowboy team. If Romo had the same stats and the same amount of playoff wins on any other team in the league, for example Chargers, Jets or Ravens- he would be considered a failure.
    In fact if you took the entire Cowboy roster and put them in Kansas City chief uniforms they would not be expected to make the playoffs. However if you took the Chiefs roster and dressed them in Cowboy uniforms people would immediately be talking Super Bowl every year.

  81. Ben is a Better QB, Period!
    Ben has a beter arm, More Mobility and better overall stats than ELi!
    If his Name was Elija Smith, No one would even bother with putting him on any list!
    A good Qb, of Course! But the New York City Hype Machine is at play on this one! It’s because aside from the NY Yankees there are no real dominant teams in that city! Most of them have sucked for some time, and Athony Marcioni…ie Lil’ Tony from Long Island has to find something to get Hyped about! Eli is slightly a bit overrated!

  82. He’s the most underrated quarterback in football… Outside of his brother, Brady and Brees, there isn’t anyone that exceeds Eli.

  83. rivers in NY would have had 3 or 4 sbs already
    we all know pro teams can’t win dick in san diego

  84. SBS0311 says:
    October 26, 2010 11:21 AM
    How Sam Bradford and Josh Freeman get on the “could” list with Sanchez being left off? I don’t think either of those two guys are or will be in Manning’s class because I think that highly of Manning, but it’s silly to put those two young guys a class ahead of Sanchez.
    He didn’t put Stafford, Sanchez, or Tebow on that list… probably for a reason. Sanchez has been good thus far in his career… but he has played with a far better defense and far superior offensive weapons than Bradford and Freeman. Also, despite being in his 2nd season, Freeman is STILL the 2nd youngest QB in the entire league… even younger than Tebow and Bradford.
    Freeman and Bradford have been consistenly asked to and been able to win games for their teams, not riding their great running games and defense to victory.
    Then if you compare Eli’s first two seasons with the first seasons of Freeman or Bradford, both Freeman and Bradford are superior. Then compare his second season with Freeman’s and you can see that Freeman’s second season is superior… it is not out of the question the Freeman and his Spartan work-ethic will continue to improve, especially as grows more familiar with the speed of the game, playbook, players around him, and the players around him improve as well.

  85. Rivers in NY and he’d be back on the farm in Alabama.
    Ben has 2 rings because of his D.

  86. Hey, there is no “i” in team, right?
    And you can’t have “Elite” without “E-L-I”… but seriously, right now that is about as close to elite that Eli will get.
    He is really good right now…and with the weapons he has around him he could be even better… but he really needs to cut down on his turnovers… he had 3 last night… and that is 3 too many.

  87. Anybody that compares Eli Manning to Trent Dilfer is a complete moron who is not worthy of a response.

  88. I think the term “elite” also has a leadership aspect to it. Or maybe, willing your team to win. This is where guys like Romo and Rivers would fall short, and it’s where Eli would get some points. Romo and Rivers have some pretty numbers, but you’ve got to get it done in big games and when your team isn’t at 100%.

  89. Eli is better than Phillip Rivers. He’s not a crybaby complainer. He gets it done.
    -Cowboys fan.

  90. I can’t argue with the guys you mentioned except for Phillip Rivers. Eli Manning is certainly not Peyton, and he’s not Brees. However, he wins & he puts up stats. He has mad the playoffs every year except for 2 years. He consistently puts up 20-plus TDs each season & approaches 4000 yards in an offense that is run-first. He hasn’t had the elite players around him that Ben & Rivers have over the years until now. I wouldn’t be surprised if he puts up far superior numbers than Ben & Rivers now that he has better skill players. Most importantly, he has a Super Bowl win & MVP in a town where winning is everything. He also has a Super Bowl MVP where Ben has none. I’d also take Eli’s professional behavior over Ben’s antics any day year or century. As for Rivers, he hasn’t even come close, continually failing to win the big games. When the game is big, the score is close, Eli finds ways to win & besides Payton, there is no better big game QB in the game. He will always be hated on by other team’s fans due to his calm demeanor, but if he was their QB, they’d love him. They can keep hating because when his career is over, he will have multiple Super Bowl rings & Hall of Fame numbers. He could improve on his decision making, but he is the best QB to ever play on the biggest stage in the world & he will be for years & years to come.

  91. When talking about Elite QB’s we should take a look at the skill players that they play with. That said lets consider this, Eli was drafted in 2004, since then the Giants have made 1 count it, 1 offensive selection in the first round (Nicks). By the way he’s tied for the league lead in touchdown receptions. In comparison Pittsburgh has drafted an offensive player in the first round in 05, 06, 08, and 10. Lets look at the other skill players that Eli plays with….Bradshaw 7th round pick, Jacobs 4th round, Manningham 3rd round, boss 5th round, Smith 2nd round, Mckenzie 3rd round, O’Hara undrafted free agent, Snee 2nd round. Outside of Eli and Nicks the Giants don’t have another 1st round pick on that offense, and by the end of the year they will be the best offense in the league.
    Back to the topic: When discussing Elite QB’s, you look for a guy that makes players around him better. When Eli came into the league, its not surprise that Barber became a top 5 runner in the league, why is that? Because teams had to pay attention to the passing game. The Giants then signed Burress, and over the span of years he played with the Giants, he became a top 10 receiver in the league. Steve Smith was the number two receiver at USC when drafter, now he is one of the best young receivers in the league. Had anyone ever heard of Kevin Boss???
    Moving on, all the morons on this sight that have said Eli isn’t elite answer this question: Of all the quarterbacks in the league, which one would you take over Eli with the game on the line in the two minute drill? If you say Brady look at the 07 Superbowl game (and for the fools that say it was luck that the Giants beat the Pats, consider this, that was the first Superbowl that their cheating coach wasn’t allowed to cheat, and guess what happened). For the guys that talk about how great Ben is, consider that he is the only QB to have multiple championships without being awarded the game MVP. The fact is, Pittsburgh’s defense has won Ben two rings period. For those that would say Rogers, he has “best quarterback to never win a ring” written all over him. When he wins, then talk.
    All that said, this post is moot, because history looks at winners. When Eli wins another Superbowl, and another Superbowl MVP, all those idiots that think Eli isn’t elite will have no choice but bELIeve!

  92. At this point now, I would rank Eli behind Brady, Peyton and Bree’s.. I would take Mcnabb if he was younger. Mcnabb played with garbage for most of his career and took those crappy WR’s to the NFC championship….. Other than that Eli is number 4 in my book. He plays in crappy weather, plays against t0p 10 defenses every year going back to 2005 and all he has done is win and make the playoffs.. Except last year when the great giants defense averaged giving up 29 points a game and of course his rookie year.

  93. @fcrwo01
    You have got to be joking. Romo is the most overrated QB in the league. He has won one playoff game in his career (a wildcard game). Yet the Cowboy’s are preseason Super Bowl/ NFC Championship Game picks every year. Explain that? Romo underachieves year after year, while Eli overachieves. Romo may have better stats, but I will take wins, leadership and championships over stats any day.

  94. I’m taking Eli over Rapistburger and Rivers for sure. Especially Rivers. Also Mayyybe Rodgers. (And I have Packer bias) Not the other 3 though.

  95. Was there a moron on this thread that actually sad they would rather have Josh freeman and matt ryan ahead of Eli? Have you people actually seen Eli play?
    People sometimes… Eli is a top 10 QB 100% for sure, and arguably a top 5 QB unless you consider fantasy gurus but qbs that cant come through in the clutch (rodgers, romo) elite QBs

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