Manning not sensing competition with Giants rookie QB
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New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur ended minicamp earlier this month with comments that seemingly set the stage for a quarterback competition in training camp.
But veteran Giants starter Eli Manning doesn't sound like he's too concerned with the buzz over rookie Daniel Jones, the sixth pick in the NFL Draft who earned positive reviews in offseason workouts.
"I mean no, I don't feel like it's a competition," Manning said in an interview on the NFL Network's Total Access. "I feel like I've got to do my job and I've got to compete every day and try to get better every day. That's the way it's been my whole life and that's just the way I've always approached practice every day to improve, to earn my place on the team, to earn the respect of the teammates and do it each year."
Some veteran quarterbacks shy away from mentoring potential young competition, but Manning said he is eager to work with Jones.
"We've got new guys and I'm trying to build a relationship with them and get them up to speed and so I'm trying to do my job in the quarterback room," Manning said.
"I've always been good with young quarterbacks, whoever's been in there, trying to get them up to speed, teaching them about defenses or styles or what our defense plays. So I'm doing the same thing with Daniel and I'm going to be a good teammate, I'm going to do the best that I can do and help everybody on the Giants be successful."
Shurmur said he is "constantly" evaluating which quarterback gives the team the best chance to win. The team opens training camp on July 24.
"We're gonna play the very best player," Shurmur said earlier this month.
"I know we're dancing around the words here, but right now Eli is getting ready to have a great year and Daniel is getting ready to play. We'll just see what happens. ... We do feel good where Eli is, he's our starting quarterback, and we've got a young player that we think is going to be an outstanding player getting himself ready to play."
Manning, 38, has started 230 games in the past 15 seasons for the Giants, throwing for 55,981 career yards. The two-time Super Bowl champ and four-time Pro Bowl player started every game last season, completing 380 of 576 passes (66.0 percent) for 4,299 yards, with 21 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.
Manning, drawing on his rookie experiences, offered some advice to Jones.
"He's coming into this team, he's just trying to learn the playbook, learn the names of everybody, got to earn the respect of his teammates. He's got so much going on. He's got the New York media, dealing with them; all of a sudden they're saying things Day 1," Manning said.
"So just work hard, take your job seriously, but don't take yourself too seriously -- if you can do that -- enjoy your teammates, listen to your coaches and we're all in this together and we'll get through it."