There is an old saying that goes, “where there’s smoke there’s fire.” For the most part, that statement is probably true. Giants fans hope that there is no fire behind the smoke of the latest NFL scandal. And why? This scandal involves two-time Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning.
You heard right Eli Manning is involved in his first off-field scandal of his career, and most people will agree that it’s shocking. The words scandal and Eli Manning don’t even go together like lamb and tuna fish. Okay, that is my last Adam Sandler reference I promise. In fact this scandal is so shocking I wish that it was brought to my attention yesterday! Sorry that was the last one I swear.
Let’s get to the meat and potatoes. The lawsuit claims that Manning knowingly passed off fake memorabilia so that he could keep the real one for his private collection. Fox Sports has reported that, according to a source, even the helmet Manning wore during Super Bowl XLII currently sitting in the Pro Football Hall of Fame is a fake. This just has sleazy written all over it. When you think of Eli Manning words that come to mind are, integrity, trust and leadership. Not shady and self centered. This story does not play well for Eli and the Manning family, especially this weekend as big brother Peyton is chasing Super Bowl immortality this Sunday.
Fox is also reporting that an email excerpt has gone public between a sports collector Eric Inselberg and equipment manager Joe Skiba. The excerpt reads (via Fox Sports):
“Hey Joe, my buddy was offered an Eli game used helmet and jersey. Are these the bs ones Eli asked you to make up because he didnt want to give up the real stuff?”
Skiba –, “BS ones, you are correct.”
Manning and the Giants responded quickly and swiftly to the allegations. This can be something really guilty people do or something really innocent people do. Here was Manning’s response:
“The Giants told me this suit is completely without merit and I have no reason to believe otherwise. The Giants are going to fight it and so will I.”
Strong words from a strong man. It’s the kind of quote that is meant to inspire confidence and at this point that is what the Manning and the Giants are trying to project. Only time will tell if Manning’s hands are clean of this one but I leave you all with a question. If you cant trust Eli Manning, who can you trust?