NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Might this be Eli Manning’s last season with the Giants?
It might be heresy, but it’s at least possible.READ MORE: Former Aides Karen Hinton, Lindsey Boylan Accuse Gov. Andrew Cuomo Of Bullying, Sexual Harassment
According to an ESPN report, the sides have been unable to work out a long-term extension and the Giants appear to be willing to let the veteran quarterback play out the 2015 season, the final year of his contract.
It is believed Manning, 34, is seeking a contract that at the very least rivals the five-year, $99 million deal Ben Roethlisberger agreed to with the Pittsburgh Steelers last week.
And he is justified in doing so.
The similarities between the quarterbacks’ careers are striking. They each won two Super Bowl championships in their first 11 seasons in the NFL. Manning has thrown for 39,755 yards to Roethlisberger’s 39,057. Manning also has eight more touchdown passes (259-251). Roethlisberger has thrown far fewer interceptions (131-185) and has the better overall passer rating (93.9-82.4).
The difference may be Manning has twice been named Super Bowl MVP, while Roethlisberger has yet to win the award.
At this point, though, the Giants don’t feel obliged to give Manning the long-term, big money job security. However, the idea of him simply leaving after the 2015 season is by no means a given. The Giants could work out an extension now that saves them salary cap space, but, according to ESPN, there is not much talent left on the open market that would warrant Big Blue needing the money.READ MORE: 6-Year-Old Boy Struck And Killed While Attempting To Board School Bus With Brother In Brooklyn
In addition, if the sides are still at a stalemate next offseason, the Giants could always franchise Manning in 2016, paying him approximately $23.7 million, or 120 percent more than his current cap hit of $19.75 million.
Manning is coming off a monster bounce-back season in which he clearly adapted to the new West Coast offense forced upon him by new offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo. He threw for 4,410 yards (second most in his career), 30 TDs (second most) and just 14 interceptions, 13 less than the career high he tossed in 2013.MORE NEWS: GameStop Shares Surge Nearly 104% In One Day
He’s also been an iron man, starting every game since assuming the starting role in 2004.