After a career-worst season in 2013, many have been left to wonder if New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning is over-the-hill. There has been debate about his ability to return to success while learning a new offense, speculation about his future as his contract slowly winds down and some eye-opening skepticism league-wide. But none of that phases General Manager Jerry Reese, who fully expects Manning to return to Pro Bowl form here in 2014.
"I expect nothing except for him to bounce back and be the pro-bowl caliber football player that we know he can be. He’s still a young football player, all things considered with respect to the quarterback position," Reese said on Wednesday. "We expect him to come back and be a leader, bounce back and not have some of the things that happened to him last year and to be a dynamic football player for us. That’s what I expect from him."
Despite Reese's lofty expectations for Manning, the two sides have yet to sit down and talk contract. And with the 33-year-old quarterback starring down the final two years of his deal — both with pretty significant cap numbers — his future in New York may, indeed, be determined by his ability (or lack thereof) to "bounce back" as his General Manager expects.
Still, Reese says the potential for a contract extension remains wide open, but it's just not something worth engaging this early in training camp.
"We keep all our options open with respect to that. Right now, there’s really nothing to talk about. We’re two days into training camp. We really don’t even talk about contracts at this point," Reese said.
In other words, Manning is going to need to show the team he's still got it if he wishes to see his contract extended beyond the 2015 season.
"This is a high-performance business. You have to perform high," Reese added. "The owners expect everyone to perform high from me to the coaches and the players. This is a high-performance business and we expect to perform at a high level."
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Tags: Eli Manning, Football, Jerry Reese, New York, New York Giants, NFL