Eli Manning is retiring, but fans will never tire of his highlights. Here are the 10 best moments of his storybook career:
DRAFT DAY April 24, 2004
General manager Ernie Accorsi had a conviction on Eli Manning, and he did what he had to do to get him. Originally the first overall pick by the San Diego Chargers in 2004, Manning was obtained by the Giants in a trade for quarterback Philip Rivers (whom the Giants had taken with the 4th pick), the Giants' 2004 third-round pick, and 2005 first- and fifth-round selections.
BRONCOS COMEBACK October 23, 2005
Manning led the Giants on two touchdown drives in the fourth quarter, including a two-yard touchdown pass to Amani Toomer with five seconds remaining that gave the Giants a 24-23 victory. On the game-winning 83-yard drive, Manning completed eight of 13 passes for 68 yards. It was the second of 42 career game-winning drives, including five in the postseason.
OT WINNER VS. PHILADELPHIA September 17, 2006
Including two NFC Championship Games, Manning was 10-4 in overtime games as a starter. His first two OT victories occurred in Philadelphia, the second of which came in 2006. He completed a then career-high 31 passes on 43 attempts for 371 yards with three touchdowns. In overtime, Manning hit all eight of his pass attempts for 83 yards, including a 31-yard touchdown pass to Plaxico Burress for a 30-24 comeback victory after trailing by 17 at the start of the fourth quarter.
NFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME VS. PACKERS January 20, 2008
Manning completed 21 of 40 passes for 251 yards in minus-23 degree wind chill in the NFC Championship Game victory at Green Bay. He increased his streak to 101 consecutive postseason passes without an interception en route to Super Bowl XLII.
SUPER BOWL XLII February 3, 2008
Manning was named the Most Valuable Player of Super Bowl XLII after he led the Giants on their game-winning drive by completing five of nine passes for 77 yards, including the go-ahead 13-yard touchdown pass to Plaxico Burress with 35 seconds remaining. The most memorable play on the drive was a 32-yard completion to David Tyree, who secured the ball against his helmet after Manning eluded the grasp of several defensive linemen.
NFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME VS. 49ers January 22, 2012
Manning set Giants records for pass attempts (589), completions (359) and yards (4,933) in 2011. The yardage total was then the sixth-highest in league history, but it was his toughness that carried the Giants to their second Super Bowl in five seasons. Despite being hit more than a dozen times and enduring six sacks, Manning got up every time and set franchise postseason records with 58 passing attempts and 32 completions in a 20-17 overtime victory at San Francisco in the NFC Championship Game.
SUPER BOWL XLVI February 5, 2012
In the Giants' 21-17 victory against New England in Super Bowl XLVI, Manning completed 30 of 40 passes (75%) for 296 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions (a passer rating of 103.8). He became just the fifth player to be named Super Bowl MVP multiple times, joining Bart Starr, Terry Bradshaw, Joe Montana and Tom Brady. His 1,219 passing yards in the 2011 postseason remain a league record.
ELI TAKES OVER THE AIRWAVES
As Manning's on-field accomplishments grew, so did his persona off the field. The world got to see what everyone in the locker room already knew: he has a keen sense of humor. From appearing in unforgettable commercials to hosting Saturday Night Live in the wake of Super Bowl XLVI, Manning became kewl.
WALTER PAYTON MAN OF THE YEAR
Eli Manning set yet another precedent for the Giants franchise. Manning, the two-time Super Bowl champion and MVP who set almost all of the team's passing records, was named a co-winner – with Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald - of the 2016 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year. Manning became the first Giants player to receive the award in its 47-year history. The award recognizes NFL players for excellence on and off the field.
CURTAIN CALL VS. DOLPHINS December 15, 2019
Week 15 of the 2019 season could have gone a lot of ways. As it turned out, fans got what they wanted. And Eli Manning got what he deserved. When Daniel Jones, the rookie who succeeded Manning in Week 3, suffered a high ankle sprain in the December 1 home game against Green Bay, many wondered if he would be available for the game against the Miami Dolphins. That was the Giants' next guest at MetLife Stadium. In between was a road game in Philadelphia, where Manning had played his first NFL game 15 years, two months, and 27 days earlier. It was clear Jones would miss at least one game, but the possibility of a second remained unclear. Jones returned to practice the Wednesday before the Miami game in a limited capacity. On Thursday, he had the same designation. Friday, no change. Thus, it became official: Manning was the starter one more time. Manning threw two touchdowns as the Giants built up a big enough lead to give him one final curtain call.