This was the first day of the rest of his NFL life, and the first day the quarterback who has been wearing No. 10 with such pride and professionalism across 15 seasons for the New York Football Giants undoubtedly could hear the footsteps, however distant they may be, of the young man who was wearing the red No. 8 outside 1925 Giants Drive.
The legends of the fall all become fall guys, and whenever his awkward day of reckoning arrives, Eli Manning will at least be able to take a tiny measure of solace in the knowledge he will one day be passing the torch to someone who has all the respect and admiration in the world for him, to someone he already knows and likes, to someone everyone seems to like … to someone who wasn’t even 7 years old when Eli Manning first showed up:
The quarterback who was wearing the red No. 8.
If there is one young franchise quarterback who can make the final days of Manning’s Hall of Fame reign any less awkward, your first impression had to be that it is the quarterback who was wearing the red No. 8. It is hardly the reason general manager Dave Gettleman drafted Daniel Jones with the sixth pick. But it sure doesn’t hurt.
“The goal is certainly to win Super Bowls. There’s no doubt about it, that’s the goal, to win multiple Super Bowls like Eli has,” Jones said. “I think Mr. Gettleman, coach Shurmur, certainly Mr. Mara and Mr. Tisch, they all expect that. I’m looking forward to that.”