EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Eli Manning, who led the New York Giants to two Super Bowls in a 16-year career that saw him set almost every team passing record, has retired.

The Giants said Wednesday that Manning would formally announce his retirement on Friday.

The 39-year-old’s future had been in doubt since the end of the season. His contract with the Giants expired after the 4-12 season, and there was little chance he would be returning to the team after losing his starting job to rookie Daniel Jones.

Manning said he wanted to think about his future after the season, and roughly three weeks after the season ended, he decided his career was over.

“For 16 seasons, Eli Manning defined what it is to be a New York Giant both on and off the field,” John Mara, the Giants’ president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

“Eli is our only two-time Super Bowl MVP and one of the very best players in our franchise’s history. He represented our franchise as a consummate professional with dignity and accountability. It meant something to Eli to be the Giants quarterback, and it meant even more to us. We are beyond grateful for his contributions to our organization and look forward to celebrating his induction into the Giants Ring of Honor in the near future.”

The Giants acquired Manning from San Diego on draft day in 2004 after the Ole Miss quarterback told the Chargers he did not want to play for them and forced the deal that general manager Ernie Accorsi gladly accepted.

It started a major turnaround for a team that was 4-12 the previous season.

Manning replaced Hall of Famer Kurt Warner as the starter after nine games. The Giants won the NFC East the following season.

Within three seasons, the Giants won their first NFL championship since the 1990 season and Manning got his first Super Bowl MVP award, knocking off the previously unbeaten New England Patriots. The second came after the 2011 season when Manning and company again beat Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and the Patriots.

In both games, Manning hit a clutch late pass on game-winning drives. He and David Tyree hooked up on the helmet catch in the first one, and he found Mario Manningham on sideline go pattern in the second, igniting an 88-yard drive.

“Eli Manning not only is the quarterback on those great teams, but he is the MVP of the Super Bowls,” former Giants coach Tom Coughlin said. “He’s an incredible big-game performer. You talk about a guy that’s great to coach, focused every day, took tremendous pride in preparing, practice, had a great sense of humor, was a cynic in the locker room. But the guys loved him and they loved him for it, and they played for him. The guys that had the opportunity to play with him know what it’s like to be with a guy with as much talent, as much grit, as much determination.”

Manning was the only player in Giants history to play 16 seasons. His 236 regular-season games (234 starts) and 248 total games are team records.

From Nov. 21, 2004 through Nov. 23, 2017, Manning started 210 consecutive regular-season games, then the second-longest streak by a quarterback in NFL history (to Brett Favre’s 297). After sitting out one game, he started the next 22 in a row, giving him 232 starts in 233 games – plus 12 postseason games. Manning never missed a game because of injury.

Manning is sixth in NFL history with 8,119 attempts and seventh with 4,895 completions, 57,023 yards and 366 touchdown passes. He also has the franchise’s highest career completion rate (60.29 percent). He was selected to four Pro Bowls.

Manning started the first two games of the recently concluded season before recently fired coach Pat Shurmur replaced him with Jones, the No. 6 pick overall in the draft. He started two more games in December after Jones sprained an ankle and led the Giants to a win over Miami in his final start at MetLife Stadium.

Off the field, Manning has donated his time to many charitable events. He was the co-recipient of the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award in 2016 with Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals.

During the Super Bowl week, Manning will be presented with the 2020 Athletes in Action/Bart Starr Award for serving as a positive role model to his family, teammates and community.

Manning is one of just five players in NFL history to win multiple Super Bowl MVP awards, joined by Brady, Joe Montana, Terry Bradshaw and Starr. Manning is one of 21 quarterbacks to win a Super Bowl without losing one, and one of 12 to win at least two Super Bowls.

JAGUARS: Jacksonville hired former Washington coach Jay Gruden as its offensive coordinator.

Washington fired Gruden in early October following an 0-5 start. He was 35-49-1 in five-plus seasons in Washington and reached the playoffs once. He previously served as Cincinnati’s offensive coordinator (2011-13) and guided quarterback Andy Dalton to his best season before leaving for Washington.

Jaguars Coach Doug Marrone wanted an experienced play-caller to pair with second-year quarterback Gardner Minshew and one of the league’s youngest offenses.

It also could lead to another opportunity for Gruden, who would have a decent chance at becoming Jacksonville’s interim coach if Marrone doesn’t get the team turned around early next season. The Jaguars have lost 20 of their last 28 games.

PATRIOTS: Rookie defensive back Joejuan Williams was arrested in Tennessee on drug charges after being stopped for speeding last Friday.

NewsChannel 5 Nashville reported that Williams, a second-round draft pick in 2019, has been charged with possession of a controlled substance, possession of legend drugs without a prescription and possession of drug paraphernalia.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.