5 Things Eli Manning Can Learn From Peyton
Since Eli Manning arrived in the league six years after his older brother Peyton had already begun his illustrious NFL career, the comparisons have been thrown around, just as you'd expect. After all, when two brothers playing the same position, in the same sport come into the league with as much fanfare as the Manning brothers did, it's only natural that the two will end up being compared to one another at nearly every turn.
Both quarterbacks have had their fair share of success, and with three Super Bowl rings, five Super Bowl appearances and dozens of shattered NFL passing records between them, it's become clear that all the hype was worth it. While I'm not here to compare the two in any capacity, there are undoubtedly still some things that younger brother Eli can learn from his more experienced older brother, even going into his 11th year in the league.
1. How To Bounce Back
If there's one thing you can say about the Manning brothers, it's that they're both very resilient—well, in their own ways. While it's hard to say that Peyton ever had a season as disappointing as the one Eli had last season, he did battle back from a nearly career-ending injury in 2011 to throw for 4,659 yards and 37 touchdowns in 2012 with Denver.
Eli is coming off of what was perhaps the worst season of his career in 2013, and will need to really come out of the gate strong this season to pull the Giants out of their rut.
2. Minimizing Mistakes
One thing Eli has always had a problem with is turnovers. While Peyton has also been known to make the occasional head-scratcher, he has kept his interceptions down for most of his career. Despite all of the passes he throws, he hasn't hit the 20-interception mark since his fourth year in the league, whereas Eli has topped 20 picks three different times since 2007.
3. Taking Charge Of The Offense
Since Peyton's earliest days in the league, there has rarely been any doubt about who was really in charge of the offense in both Indianapolis and Denver. The older Manning has an innate ability to take charge on the field and run his offense the way he wants to.
With a new West Coast offense being installed in New York this season and the arrival of new offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo, Eli will have a fresh start and a chance to reinvent himself with an offense that should favor his abilities and his desire to spread the field. This is the perfect chance for him to step into a role more similar to the one Peyton plays in Denver and played in Indianapolis, and to really take charge of the offense like he's shown flashes of being capable of doing.
4. Making The Most Of The Regular Season
Peyton has been the undisputed king of the regular season throughout most of his career, and has shattered countless regular season passing records en route to division title after division title.
On the other hand, Eli has frequently struggled during the regular season, and has historically been a late-bloomer, flourishing late in the season and during the playoffs. While no one is going to complain about his propensity to turn his game up to another level when the postseason begins, it's better regular season play that Giants fans would like to see more of. One thing still missing from Eli's career is one of those staggeringly impressive regular season performances that we've come to expect from Peyton after all these years. Is he due for one this season?
5. Making Better Pre-Snap Adjustments
Peyton revolutionized offensive play-calling in Indianapolis, and has continued his fast-paced, manic style of calling plays at the line and making pre-snap adjustments based on his defensive reads.
While Eli has, for the most part, successfully employed his own style of play-calling and pre-snap adjustments, there still seem to be too many moments of uncertainty in his game. In particular, these are moments where he's not as quick to recognize a blitz or fails to go through his progressions, causing him to make rash decisions that lead to careless turnovers. It's one area that Eli will hopefully continue to improve on, especially once the new offense begins to get rolling.