Eli Manning's Burden

Kid Brother Takes a Load Off
Share |

Elisha Nelson Manning (whose name wouldn’t stick out on a list of Confederate generals) is a walking, mumbling Southern hegemone. Eli, his dad (legally Elisha Archibald Manning III), and the whole clan are quietly a lot more Mississippi than people realize, though much more Haley Barbour Mississippi than Brett Favre Mississippi. Archie hails from Drew, MS, a tiny, Black Belt hometown he shares with photographer William Eggleston (whose art was used on the cover of Big Star’s Radio City—infinity Southern-cred points). On the distaff side, clan mother Olivia Manning is from Philadelphia, MS—yes, that Philadephia, MS.

And for as long as Elisha Nelson Manning has been a starting quarterback in the NFL, it has been a source of comfort and grace to me that he’s not very good at being a starting quarterback in the NFL. This isn’t because I have any particular beef with Eli Manning as a vessel for football talent or even his general project of looking like an mutant fifteen-year-old. I find his shy-unto-sullen frat-dude thing vaguely endearing, for reasons I don’t understand. When Eli got a ring in 2007, that was mostly hilarious, because I’m not a Patriots fan, and because the Helmet Catch was first-rate sports melodrama.

But it wasn’t first-rate football, or even first-rate quarterbacking. In fact, the game by rights should have been over two plays earlier, when Manning lobbed a pass to Asante Samuel, who was so surprised by the shittiness of the throw that he forget to intercept it. Eli bounced right off that guardrail, and managed to just barely avoid getting sacked by two different dudes before valiantly overthrowing David Tyree.

But the thing about flags is that they do not stop flying. Eli’s Super Bowl win/MVP will last forever, and so will his quintessence of awkward little brother. Now that he’s reprising the role of Tom Brady’s foil, Eli Manning’s distinct Shia LeBoeuf vibe is stronger than ever. Yes, the Giants won Super Bowl XLII, Yes, the Transformers franchise has earned $2.6 billion dollars worldwide. Yes, I see little kids in New York City wearing Eli Manning jerseys—but that’s only because the Giants only have one starting QB. And also because of Mark Sanchez.

Basic metrics seem to bear out a gentle upward arc in Eli’s on-field performance as he marched toward and past age 30. Davy Crockett kilt him a bar when he was only 3, but people grew up faster back then. Let’s all give Eli Manning a pat on the head (using a stepladder, because he’s somehow 6’4”) for finding the keys before age 45. But because he's still, on a molecular level, Eli Manning, the Giants still lost to the Redskins twice this year. He still threw 25 picks in 2010 (granted, a number of those weren’t his fault). Even as a consensus #1 pick, eight-year veteran, and Super Bowl MVP, Eli Manning was and is eternally unfinished.

Except Eli Manning is actually a great QB now.

Well, that’s not strictly speaking accurate or true. He’s not Brady or pre-angry-years Peyton Manning great. But anyone who saw a mud-spattered Eli get engulfed by an angry swarm of 49ers defenders while completing a 30-yard-pass to Ahmad Bradshaw in the NFC title game—or rather, saw him pop up, unfaded, shake his spinal column back into alignment, and keep going—saw Eli Manning in the the act of grown-man shit. He took the burden of history, carefully placed it in the garbage, and lit the garbage on fire. I'm not positive he won't later fall into that flaming trash can, but for the next five days at least, he's free.

It seems paradoxical to say that a guy with a ring and an MVP trophy has anything like a history to be burdened by, but that’s Eli Manning for you. Even post-XLII he seemed to play under duress, to be still pushing to validate himself as a sufficiently noble heir to a great Southern football patrimony. It’s tempting to wring meaning from Eli’s Giants and their periodic tendency for unlikely Super Bowl appearances, to posit that Eli is about to trip over the threshold of greatness. But I'm not sure Eli Manning will ever be a great QB in the traditional sense, even if he shreds the Patriots’ balsa-wood defense this Sunday. But he has mastered an important concept in the American cultural lexicon, the same play that Southern dudes have been turning over, from Bob Dylan (Southern end of the Mesabi Range) to Newt Gingrich: Don’t look back.


Share |

Comments

I am glad to locate your recognized method for composing the post. Presently you make it simple for me to comprehend and actualize the idea. Much obliged to you for the post. extensions düsseldorf

Awesome information! I as of late ran over your online journal and have been perusing along. I thought I would leave my first remark. Best Money Lender in Tuas

It was thinking about whether I could utilize this review on my other site, I will interface it back to your site though.Great Thanks. balloon delivery

I am so happy and proud of you to provide such amazing stuff, I’m truly thankful to you!
fashion

Awesome and interesting article. Great things you’ve always shared with us. Best Money Lende in Yishun

I see the greatest contents on your blog and I extremely love reading them. Best Money Lender in Tanjong Pagar

I see the greatest contents on your blog and I extremely love reading them. Seo made easy

A very awesome blog post. We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up. Great work remedy for acne

You have made an awesome showing on this article. It's exceptionally lucid and exceedingly astute. You have even figured out how to make it reasonable and simple to peruse. You have some genuine written work ability. Much thanks to you. home

Eu vou ler isto. Eu vou ter a certeza de voltar. Obrigado por compartilhar E também Este artigo dá a luz em que podemos observar a realidade. Este é um muito agradável e dá a informação do indepth. Obrigado por este bom artigo serviço de eletricista,

Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info. Auto & Transport

Stunning, cool post. I'd like to compose like this as well – requiring some serious energy and genuine diligent work to make an extraordinary article… yet I put things off a lot of and never appear to begin. Much appreciated however. kit tattoo

Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info. apartamentos a venda em guarapari praia do morro

I have perused your article, it is extremely enlightening and supportive for me.I respect the profitable data you offer in your articles. A debt of gratitude is in order for posting it.. esurance car insurance quote

Thank you so very much buddies! I like your all best ever posts daily here. My hat is off to you on your special working.
best essay writing service

This is truly a decent and educational, containing all data furthermore greatly affects the new innovation. A debt of gratitude is in order for sharing it, colonial penn life insurance

I as of late ran over your online journal and have been perusing along. I thought I would leave my first remark. I don't recognize what to say with the exception of that I have delighted in perusing. Decent blog. I will continue going by this site frequently. http://www.myheimat.de/bonn/kultur/live-casino-videos-zum-lernen-der-effektivsten-casinotricks-d2778576.html

I definitely enjoying every little bit of it. It is a great website and nice share. I want to thank you. Good job! Care Jobs

This is really an awesome read for me. I have bookmarked it and I am anticipating perusing new articles. Keep doing awesome!. http://www.meine-news.de/homburg/hobby-und-freizeit/live-casino-tricks-d16602.html

I expected work no less than this from you and you've not disappointed me. This is great work from your side, my friend. I just hope that you can continue this in the future as well ross county bail bondsman

Its an extraordinary delight perusing your post.Its loaded with data I am searching for and I want to post a remark that "The substance of your post is marvelous" Great work. shoe deodorizer amazon

Howdy dudes! Astonishing stuff keep it up!!
Chris Walker - best Denver SEO expert

Extraordinary substance material and awesome design. Your site merits the majority of the positive input it's been getting. testosterone boosting exercises

Great site! I genuinely adore how it is simple on my eyes it is. I am considering how I may be informed at whatever point another post has been made. I have subscribed to your RSS which may do the trap? Have an extraordinary day! as an example

I am extremely delighted in for this web journal. Its a useful subject. It help me all that much to take care of a few issues. Its chance are so awesome and working style so rapid. best white wine glass amazon

It is basic that we read blog entry precisely. I am now done it and find this post is truly astounding. Licensed Moneylender in Buona Vista

I like viewing web sites which comprehend the price of delivering the excellent useful resource free of charge. I truly adored reading your posting. Thank you! Moneylender in Tiong Bahru

I like viewing web sites which comprehend the price of delivering the excellent useful resource free of charge. I truly adored reading your posting. Thank you! Moneylender in Lakeside

Howdy. I discovered your site utilizing msn. This is an extremely elegantly composed article. I'll make sure to bookmark it and return to peruse a greater amount of your valuable data. A debt of gratitude is in order for the post. I'll unquestionably return. recommended site

Hi I found your site by mistake when i was searching yahoo for this acne issue, I must say your site is really helpful I also love the design, its amazing!. Moneylender in Bukit Gombak

Excellent read, Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style. Thanks a million and please keep up the effective work. Moneylender in Bukit Gombak

This is an incredible rousing article.I am practically satisfied with your great work.You put truly extremely accommodating data. Keep it up. Continue blogging. Hoping to perusing your next post. Moneylender in Raffles Place

i am interestingly here. I discovered this board and I in discovering It genuinely accommodating and it helped me out a great deal. I want to present something back and help other people, for example, you helped me. golf bag

Thanks for the nice blog. It was very useful for me. I'm happy I found this blog. Thank you for sharing with us,I too always learn something new from your post. The Survive In Bed

Awesome information! I as of late ran over your online journal and have been perusing along. I thought I would leave my first remark. http://www.athenacontracts.ie/

This is really a nice and informative, containing all information and also has a great impact on the new technology. Thanks for sharing it tantric massage baker street

I must say, I thought this was a pretty interesting read when it comes to this topic. Liked the material. . . body to body massage London

I read your blog frequently and I just thought I’d say keep up the amazing work! end of tenancy cleaning Manchester

Best work you have done, this online site is truly cool with incredible truths. more information

Great post! I am actually getting ready to across this information, is very helpful my friend. Also great blog here with all of the valuable information you have. Keep up the good work you are doing here. professional backing tracks

This is truly a decent and educational, containing all data furthermore greatly affects the new innovation. A debt of gratitude is in order for sharing it, cosmetics online shopping in india

I simply discovered this site and have high trusts in it to proceed. Keep up the considerable work, its elusive great ones. I have added to my top picks. Much thanks to You. voyance par telephone

Excellent read, Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style. Thanks a million and please keep up the effective work. sklep zoologiczny

I really appreciate this wonderful post that you have provided for us. I assure this would be beneficial for most of the people. Web Design in Belfast

This is a wonderful article, Given so much info in it, These type of articles keeps the users interest in the website, and keep on sharing more ... good luck. tanie zabawki

Excellent read, Positive site, where did u come up with the information on this posting?I have read a few of the articles on your website now, and I really like your style. Thanks a million and please keep up the effective work. kawa i herbata

I am actually getting ready to across this information, is very helpful my friend. Also great blog here with all of the valuable information you have. Keep up the good work you are doing here as an example

Very interesting blog. A lot of blogs I see these days don't really provide anything that I'm interested in, but I'm most definitely interested in this one. Just thought that I would post and let you know
Social bookmarking

This kind of blogs is too attractive that catch the attention of anyone through their great features.
write my paper

Its an incredible joy perusing your post.Its brimming with data I am searching for and I want to post a remark that "The substance of your post is amazing" Great work. trust flow backlinks