One of Elisha Nelson Manning’s more endearing qualities is his ability to place every game in its proper perspective. Fourteen seasons in the National Football League and 200 consecutive regular season starts will do that.
The Giants offense had better days than Sunday’s 19-3 loss to the Dallas Cowboys. They managed only 53 plays, 35 rushing yards, and just 26 minutes of possession. They only scored three points in a game that was more of a drubbing than the final score will indicate.
Manning was asked if he was worried about the offense after the regular season opener. No. 10 exhibited that place everything in its proper perspective quality that helped make him the greatest quarterback in Giants history.
“First game,” Manning said in an interview with the New York Daily News. “Guys were playing fast, got some good guys out there, some new bodies. So, we’ll bounce back. We’ll be fine. We just have to slow down, everybody take a breath and just run the plays the way we’ve been running them all spring and all summer.”
Manning didn’t have his best game (28-of-37 for 220 yards and an interception) but it wasn’t entirely his fault. The offensive line failed to provide adequate protection, the receivers missed some opportunities to make huge plays, and that wide receiver who wears No. 13 watched the game from the sideline.
“It’s part of losing a game,” Manning said. “You’re going to analyze and you can’t get too sensitive after the first game. You’re going to get coached up, and there’s things we can clean up, for sure, but you can’t get defensive, can’t get sensitive. You just have to be confident in what you’re doing, understand what you need to fix and then go play fast.”
Manning expects the offense to improve in Monday night’s home opener against the Detroit Lions. He also recognized the loss of Odell Beckham Jr., who hasn’t practiced since injuring his ankle in a preseason game Aug. 21. At the same time, he has the utmost confidence in his offense.
“There’s no hiding the fact he’s a playmaker,” Manning said. “Our best player. It’s pretty obvious. I think everybody knows that. It’s different when he’s on the field, but on there or not, we have to play better than what we did and we can, and we will.”