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1.18 Mailbag for January 18th

Welcome to "Michael Eisen's Mailbag." Every few days,'s exclusive Writer/Editor Michael Eisen will pick some of the best questions and comments we receive via email* and answer them right here! If you'd like to submit a question or comment to Michael, click here.

Do you think the Giants could afford to keep both Jacobs and Ward? Also, don't you think the Giants should trade Plaxico Burress for something, perhaps a Calvin Johnson or Kevin Smith from the Lions? Chris T.

Dear Chris:

I think the constraints of the salary cap will make it difficult for the Giants to keep both Brandon Jacobs and Derrick Ward in 2009. And I would be surprised if Ward didn't want to at least investigate the possibility that he could be a No. 1 back for another team. Regarding Burress…as we have said repeatedly, he has legal and personal issues to work out before he can think about playing again. Regardless of what the Giants' thinking might be, who would trade for a player that might not be able to play?

Is Giants Stadium an asset or a liability for the Giants? At critical times, especially late in the season, the weather becomes too much of a factor in many of the games, which causes major problems especially in the kicking and the passing game for both sides.

Is this going to improve in the new stadium?

Zvi Bernstein

Dear Zvi:

Interesting question. Our record at home the last three seasons is poor, but I don't know if I'd blame the stadium. It wasn't a liability on the night of Dec. 21, when we beat Carolina to secure the NFC's No. 1 seed. I don't think it was the stadium's fault that we didn't convert on those two fourth downs in the fourth quarter or we couldn't score touchdowns from the red zone. As for your last question, I certainly hope it does improve in the new stadium.

What was the main reason Manningham was not used more? I would've thought bookends of Manningham and Burress was the way to go all season. Is he not adjusting to the pros? He seemed quite competent in college. I was thrilled when he was drafted, then...nothing.

Thanks for any insight.


Dear Bob:

Mario Manningham missed most of training camp with an injury and spent much of the season trying to make up for lost time. He has ability and I think he will be a good player in the future. But for wide receiver, perhaps more than any other position, it is a big jump from college football to the NFL. Consider that 303 wide receivers have been drafted in the 2000 decade. Only two of them had 1,000 receiving yards as rookies (including one of 37 first-rounders). In college, the wideouts might face a great corner every tree or four weeks. In the NFL they do every game. Manningham fell behind and had to work to catch up. I think it will pay off next year.

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