On Tuesday afternoon, the New York Giants made the stunning announcement that quarterback Eli Manning has been benched in favor of Geno Smith, who many seemed to forget was even on the roster until today’s news.
The benching comes with the Giants sitting at a disappointing 2-9 on the year.
“Each and every week our number one job is to win the football game. We’re 2-9 and out of contention,” Giants head coach Ben McAdoo told reporters. “With that, we’re going to start Geno Smith and give him an opportunity this week to see what he can do.
“This is not the end of Eli in New York. At this point it’s my responsibility to take a look at Geno Smith and Davis Webb.”
The decision to bench Manning ends his 210 game consecutive regular-season starting streak. It was the second-longest in NFL history, behind Brett Favre’s 297.
“Coach McAdoo told me I could continue to start while Geno and Davis are given an opportunity to play,” Manning said. “My feeling is that if you are going to play the other guys, play them. Starting just to keep the streak going and knowing you won’t finish the game and have a chance to win it is pointless to me, and it tarnishes the streak. Like I always have, I will be ready to play if and when I am needed. I will help Geno and Davis prepare to play as well as they possibly can.”
As you would expect, Twitter was ready with the jokes.
This season, Manning has thrown for 2,411 yards, 14 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He has also fumbled the ball seven times.
Geno Smith’s first start of the year will come on Sunday afternoon against the Oakland Raiders.
Kickoff is set for 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX.