By Matt Citak
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has said he wants to continue his NFL career into his mid-to-late 40s. The Giants’ Manning, the only signal-caller to beat Brady in a Super Bowl, said Tuesday he thinks he can at least make it in the NFL until he is 40.
“Yeah, I think sitting here right now, I think I can play another four years,” the 36-year-old quarterback told ESPN.
Manning’s contract runs through the 2019 season. He would turn 40 at the conclusion of the 2020 season.
The Giants have discussed limiting Manning’s workload this summer and keeping him on a “pitch count” in order to try to keep him fresh for the regular season. The team has also acknowledged that their third-round pick from this year’s draft, Cal quarterback Davis Webb, could end up as Manning’s replacement not too far down the road.
“That’s the way the body feels. … Again with football, you don’t know what’s going to be the difference, how you’re going to feel next year,” said Manning, who is now in 14th season. “And right now I still have the same enthusiasm and I’m working hard and I like doing the training and watching film and doing everything I have to do to prepare for it. So I don’t see it slowing down. I think until the time comes or that changes, I’m going to keep going as hard as I can.”
Earlier this year, Giants general manager Jerry Reese said the franchise quarterback and two-time Super Bowl champ is “probably on the back nine” of his NFL career.
Manning threw for more than 4,000 yards in 2016, the third time he’s eclipsed that lofty number, along with 26 touchdowns, and 16 interceptions. His completion percentage of 63.0 was just below his career high set in 2014 (63.1 percent).
The Giants’ leader has been one of the most durable players in NFL history. His active consecutive games started streak currently sits at 199 games, which is the 14th-longest in the history of the sport. Manning’s streak is also the third-longest among quarterbacks, trailing only Brett Favre (297) and older brother Peyton Manning (208).
Matt Citak is a producer for CBS Local Sports and a proud Vanderbilt alum. Follow him on Twitter or send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.