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Eli Manning's Injury Shows He's Not An Elite NFL Quarterback

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water cooler                  logoIt seems that whenever preseason NFL games are discussed, it's cliche to qualify any statement you make by saying, "it's only a preseason game" or "we have to remember it's just preseason."

Last night's preseason game between the NY Giants and NY Jets gives us reason to throw out that rule. Eli Manning suffered an ugly injury last night which could have easily been avoided. The hit he took from Jets LB Calvin Pace resulted in a three-inch gash and twelve stitches.

When you watch the clip from last night's game you'll see that Eli Manning dropped back to pass and ran into Brandon Jacobs just prior to being leveled by Jets linebacker Calvin Pace. Since ESPN broadcasted the game, they are banning anyone from uploading it on Youtube, so the best place to find the clip is on (you guessed it) ESPN's site right here.

For a quarterback who is entering his seventh season in the NFL, this lack of awareness on his part is inexcusable. And, it further proves that he's not an elite NFL mcdougale hit on eli manningquarterback. Pocket awareness is a basic skill that should be possessed by any quarterback at any level let alone the NFL level. This is one of those injuries that could have resulted in the end of Manning's career.

Manning looked more like the rookie who took the field against the Eagles in 2004 in his NFL debut. In his first game in real NFL action, the Eagles introduced him quickly to what it's like to play in the pros. Who can forget the hit Jerome McDougle laid upon Manning in  his NFL debut? That might have been McDougle's only play he ever made as an Eagle.

This is what separates Eli Manning from the likes of Brett Favre, Tom Brady, Drew Brees, and his brother Peyton - who each exude command in the pocket at all times are aware of everything going on. Having a rocket for an arm does not make one elite; you have to have it upstairs as well.

The national media should take notice and remember this the next time they try to shove Eli Manning down everybody throats by reminding us how elite he is.