New York Giants: Comparing Top College Quarterback Prospects To Eli Manning

New York Giants quarterback, Eli Manning.

Eli Manning has had an incredible and historic career with the New York Giants. He took them to two Super Bowls, won them both, and was named MVP of both games. He holds every passing record in franchise history.

Eli has been the face of the franchise for over a decade. But after 15 years, it might be time to find a new face of the franchise. Eli Manning is one of a kind. He cannot be replaced. But the 15-year veteran is now 38 years old and does not have a lot of time left in the NFL.

When Eli and the Giants decide it is time to move on, the Giants will need to be prepared. The Giants may look to draft his successor in the upcoming draft.

In the 2019 NFL Draft, the Giants have many options for who could be selected to be Manning’s successor. Throughout his career, Manning played as a clutch quarterback who was never afraid to fire a big-time, gutsy pass. Some of the prospects in 2019 are similar to that. However, some of them are much different. The Giants could look for more of the same, or they could look to make a major change at the way their quarterback position is played.

Senior Prospects:

Eli Manning played college football until his senior year. Notable 2019 draft prospects who are seniors include Drew Lock and Will Grier.

In his college career, similar to his NFL career, Manning threw a lot of touchdowns but also threw a lot of interceptions (a 2.3 touchdown to interception ratio). He has the second highest collegiate-career interception total when comparing him to the 2019 prospects.

However, he is also tied for the second-highest touchdown total. Eli threw 81 touchdown passes, as did West Virginia quarterback Will Grier. Grier only threw 23 interceptions, however, compared to Eli’s 35. Grier played a much cleaner game of football (about a 3.5 touchdown to interception ratio), keeping the turnovers to a minimum.

Drew Lock from Missouri is another top senior prospect. Lock threw a whopping 99 touchdown passes in his 4 collegiate years. Through his 4 years, he also threw 39 interceptions, resulting in a 2.5 to 1 touchdown to interception ratio. His ratio is similar to Manning’s, but his high touchdown totals are enough to wow NFL scouts.

Lock also leads the class, Manning included, in passing yards. Lock threw for 12,193 yards, compared to Manning’s 10,119 yards, and Grier’s 8,556 yards. Lock’s higher numbers are due to him playing 50 games, while Grier only played 28 games, and Manning only playing 43 games. However, his number of games played should not undermine the fact that Lock was a highly efficient quarterback in college.

Junior Prospects:

There are also a few juniors who are near the top of the draft board. Those include Kyler Murray, and Daniel Jones. A fan favorite prospect, Dwayne Haskins, is a red-shirt junior. Haskins is considered by many to be the top quarterback in the 2019 Draft Class.

A couple of the juniors in this class also played a clean game with minimal turnovers. Dwayne Haskins and Kyler Murray both have incredible touchdown to interception ratios. Haskins threw 54 touchdown passes to 9 interceptions (a spectacular 6 to 1 ratio). Murray threw 50 touchdown passes to 14 interceptions (about a 3.5 to 1 ratio).

Daniel Jones out of Duke played less of a clean game in college. He threw 52 touchdown passes to 29 interceptions (a 1.8 to 1 ratio). This puts him far below the rest of the 2019 quarterback class and below Eli Manning’s 2.3 to 1 ratio. Despite this, scouts have linked Jones to the Giants because of his connections with Eli Manning.

Daniel has been to several Manning Passing Camps and was coached by the same head coach who helped Eli get ready for the NFL, David Cutcliffe. This connection, plus Daniel Jones‘s ideal height and weight, make him an intriguing prospect to many scouts.

Dwayne Haskins is by far the most statistically efficient quarterback in this class with a 6 to 1 ratio, but all scouts have is a small sample size. Dwayne started only one season at Ohio State. It was an incredible, 50 touchdown season, but scouts wish they could have seen more.

Kyler Murray was also highly efficient with a 3.5 to 1 ratio. However, Kyler Murray also played just one season as a starter. But in that season, Murray won the Heisman Trophy. Haskins came in third place in the Heisman voting, just like Eli Manning in 2003.

What makes Kyler Murray so special is his dual-threat ability. This is something Eli Manning never really brought to the table. Some Giants fans have been banging the table for a while now, crying out for a mobile quarterback to come save the Giants from their terrible offensive line.

A lot of Manning’s struggles over the year can be attributed to poor offensive line play. A mobile quarterback, like Murray, may be able to cancel out a lack of talent on the offensive line. Murray ran for 12 touchdowns in his junior season and picked up 1,001 rushing yards. Manning has gained 560 total rushing yards in his 15 year NFL career.

A dual-threat quarterback would be a major change for the Giants, but it could be just what they need to take their explosive offense to the next level. The read option with Murray and Saquon Barkley could be one of the deadliest plays in the NFL if the Giants drafted Kyler.

New York Giants: Quarterbacks To Watch At The Senior Bowl

The New York Giants drafted

We know the Giants love to draft players from the senior bowl. Last year’s Senior Bowl MVP, quarterback Kyle Lauletta, was a 4th round selection for the Giants in 2018. In 2017, Giants’ third round pick Davis Webb was the Senior Bowl MVP. They also picked another Senior Bowl standout in the third round of the 2018 Draft: B.J. Hill.

With a history of drafting players who perform in the Senior Bowl, it would not be a surprise if the Giants look to draft another senior quarterback in 2019.

North Team Quarterbacks:

The two most notable quarterbacks on the Senior Bowl North Team roster are Drew Lock and Daniel Jones. They are both projected to be first or second round selections in the 2019 NFL Draft.

The two other quarterbacks are Ryan Finley and Trace McSorley. Neither of them have received first round buzz recently, but they could be mid-round selections that NFL teams will look to turn into developmental players. It is unlikely that the Giants will spend another mid-round pick on a quarterback in 2019, after taking one in 2018. The quarterbacks to watch out of Mobile in 2019 for the Giants are Lock and Jones.

Drew Lock is a senior out of Missouri. In his official Senior Bowl weigh-in, Lock was measured at 6′ 3″, 223 lbs., with a 33.5″ arm length and 9″ hands. On the first day of Senior Bowl practice, Lock excelled.

According to The Draft Network, he was the best of all the quarterbacks. Drew Lock was a statistically great quarterback in his junior and senior years at Missouri. As a junior, Lock threw 44 touchdown passes to 13 interceptions with 3,964 yards. This is certainly his best statistical season. However, Lock played a cleaner game as a senior. He reduced his interception total to only 8 and still added 28 touchdown passes.

Daniel Jones, the NFL prototype out of Duke, struggled in his first practice of the Senior Bowl. He weighed in at 220 lbs. to go along with his 6′ 5″ frame that scouts love. He also has big hands at 9 3/4″ with long 33 1/4″ arms.

Jones struggled with ball placement and timing even during on-air drills, consistently putting balls behind their receivers or forcing them to slow and wait on vertical patterns. Jones improved a little in the 1-on-1s, dropping in a nice corner route for his best throw of the day.

Daniel receives a lot of first round buzz due in part to his former coach. David Cutcliffe is a great quarterback coach who got multiple players ready for the NFL, including Eli Manning and Peyton Manning. Statistically, Daniel Jones will not blow you away. However, he has the prototypical body type and all the physical tools to succeed at the next level, plus the professional coaching.

Ryan Finley out of NC State used to be projected as one of the top quarterbacks in the 2019 draft class. However, after his senior year, he has slipped in prospect rankings. One red flag with Finley is his age. He is 24 years old. That makes him older than all of the first round quarterbacks in last year’s draft, and a year older than second-year pro Patrick Mahomes. However, Finley showed flashes of great play in college. With a great week at the Senior Bowl, Finley’s stock could rise again.

Trace McSorley is an undersized signal-caller from Penn State. He played in a run-heavy offense with Saquon Barkley in 2017. In 2018, McSorley actually threw even less passes for lower statistics. However, he is a dual-threat quarterback. McSorley ran in 11 touchdowns in 2017 and 12 in 2018. In 2018, he totaled an impressive 798 rushing yards. What scouts have seen from McSorley as a thrower is a small sample size. However, his rushing ability is enough to draw him some interest. Trace could use a big week in Mobile to move up the big boards.