/Last chapter or not, the book on Eli Manning is filled with class, dignity, generosity

Last chapter or not, the book on Eli Manning is filled with class, dignity, generosity

We are not sure if he will continue playing beyond this season. We don’t know if the Duke product will keep him around to tutor and back up Daniel Jones. I don’t know if Manning might play elsewhere. This is something I know because I have covered Manning over the years. First at Newman High, New Orleans. Then at Ole Miss. Finally, with the Giants. He will be an example of class in whatever he does. He will keep his head up. He will do the right things. He was raised right, as we say in Mississippi. It is a reminder of the way his father dealt with a similar situation many years ago. Archie Manning, after risking his life with the New Orleans Saints for almost 12 seasons, was fired by Bum Phillips who traded him to Houston Oilers. Many Saints fans, especially those from Mississippi, were devastated. Archie was right. Olivia and Archie had made New Orleans their home. Archie was able to persevere despite a badly managed franchise and an ever-changing support cast. He had fought through six former head coaches, many wide receivers, and a group of offensive linemen that seemed to have one thing in common. They couldn’t block. Archie Manning could have made a fuss. He could have said: “And here is how you say thanks …”.” Instead, he flew almost daily to Houston to meet Olivia and her sons. After dinner, he put the boys to sleep. Houston traded him to Minnesota in the post-Bud Grant scheme that didn’t go as planned. Archie was a good worker, regardless of whether he was playing backup or starting, and he did his job until his retirement in 1984. It was not an easy task. It won’t be easy for Eli, who led Giants to two Super Bowl rings. He will also go down in NFL History as the quarterback who defeated Brady, Belichick and the New England Patriots in Super Bowls, not once but twice. As a leader and quarterback, Eli Manning doesn’t have anything to apologize for. As a person and role model, he has absolutely nothing to be sorry for. Eli and Abby Manning are to be credited for providing millions upon millions of dollars in funding for charities and causes across New York, New Jersey and Louisiana, and especially Mississippi. The partnership between Eli Manning and Friends of Children’s Hospital in Mississippi saw the opening of the Eli Manning Children’s Clinics in Mississippi in 2009. To make the clinics possible, the couple raised over $2.5 million. The couple were honorary co-chairs of the Campaign for Children’s of Mississippi led by Joe Sanderson and Kathy Sanderson. This campaign has raised nearly $76 million so far. The Manning Family Fund for a Healthier Mississippi has donated almost $1.3 million to support UMMC. Dan Jones, a former vice-chancellor at UMMC and chancellor of Ole Miss, said that Eli and Abby were all-in on the fundraising… There aren’t many Elis. He is his Daddy’s and Mama’s child. “I’ve never seen a more humble and generous athlete.” The previous fundraising figures do not include Eli’s out-of-pocket donations. Jones said, “They do it quietly.” Perhaps we should end with the thought that professional athletes who earn millions of dollars would give back to society in a similar way as Eli Manning.