- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 22, 2020

New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning will announce his retirement from the NFL at a news conference Friday.

Manning, 39, played for 16 seasons and won two Super Bowls with the Giants, both coming against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. The younger brother of Peyton Manning reached two Super Bowls before Peyton did.

“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 No. 1 overall draft pick by San Diego in 2004, Manning never played for the Chargers thanks to a draft-day trade that sent Manning to New York and Philip Rivers to the Chargers. Manning took over as starter during his rookie year, but only started to flourish in his second season.

Manning retires with the seventh-most passing yards in NFL history (57,023) and seventh-most passing touchdowns (366). 

At one point, Manning started 210 consecutive regular-season games for the Giants, until then-coach Ben McAdoo benched him for a game in favor of Geno Smith in Week 13 of the 2017 season. It was the second-longest streak for a quarterback behind only Brett Favre.

But age had caught up to him by then, and he was a less efficient quarterback over the final few years of his career. The Giants have had only one winning season since 2011, and the team prepared for the future by drafting quarterback Daniel Jones with the sixth overall pick in 2019.

Manning was benched for Jones in Week 3 this season, but the veteran saw his last taste of game time in December when Jones was injured. After the season, Manning said he hadn’t made up his mind about the future, but he strongly hinted at not wanting to return to New York by saying backing up Jones was “no fun.”

Manning finished with a career record of 117-117.

• Adam Zielonka can be reached at azielonka@washingtontimes.com.

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