Eli Manning‘s consecutive games streak will come to an end in Week 13, as Geno Smith will start at quarterback for the New York Giants.
That’s not a joke, Giants fans. The team made the announcement Tuesday afternoon.
— New York Giants (@Giants) November 28, 2017
“Geno will start this week,” head coach Ben McAdoo told reporters, via Michael Eisen of Giants.com. “Over the last five games, we will take a look at Geno, and we will also give Davis an opportunity.”
Smith, 27, last started an NFL game in Week 7 of the 2016 season for the New York Jets. His lone appearance as a Giant came in the team’s mortifying 51-17 Week 8 loss to the Los Angeles Rams.
Davis Webb, the team’s third-round pick (87th overall) in the 2017 NFL Draft, will also see action under center for the Giants.
As for Eli Manning, the two-time Super Bowl MVP had no interest in extending his streak of 210 consecutive games played, which has lasted more than 13 years, as a part-time player.
“Coach McAdoo told me I could continue to start while Geno and Davis are given an opportunity to play,” Manning said. “My feeling is that if you are going to play the other guys, play them. Starting just to keep the streak going and knowing you won’t finish the game and have a chance to win it is pointless to me, and it tarnishes the streak. Like I always have, I will be ready to play if and when I am needed. I will help Geno and Davis prepare to play as well as they possibly can.”
General manager Jerry Reese insisted that the move wasn’t a statement on Manning’s future with the team, but rather a reality check for where the team currently sits.
“This is not a statement about anything other than we are 2-9, and we have to do what is best for the organization moving forward, and that means evaluating every position,” Reese said. “I told Eli this morning that an organization could not ask for any more in a franchise quarterback. He has been that and more. Nobody knows what the future holds, but right now, this is what we think is best for the franchise.”