Eli Manning, A.J. Green Finalize Long-Term Extensions With Giants and Bengals
Two huge signings went down in the NFL on late Friday, with the New York Giants agreeing to a contract extension with franchise quarterback Eli Manning and the Cincinnati Bengals securing superstar wide receiver A.J. Green to a long-term deal.
Manning Here to Stay
Manning had been rumored to be close to a deal with the Giants all summer, but there was ongoing speculation that New York was reluctant to commit to the star quarterback due to three straight years without a trip to the playoffs. Manning showed signs of life in the second half of the 2014 NFL season, however, and capped a mixed season with 30 passing touchdowns. With star #1 target Odell Beckham Jr. at his disposal, an investment in the two-time Super Bowl winning passer ultimately made a good amount of sense.
Despite some questions surrounding Manning and the Giants as a whole, the 34-year old quarterback made out quite well in his new deal, which extends through the 2019 NFL season. The deal also includes a no trade clause and gives Manning a guaranteed $65 million.
Giants and Eli Manning have their agreement. Same terms but Giants agreed to main hurdle – no-trade clause.
— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) September 11, 2015
While Manning and the G-Men have struggled since winning their third Super Bowl in franchise history back in 2011, extending their star quarterback signals the offense may be back on track. If that is indeed the case, Manning and co. could start to work their way back into the playoff picture in 2015.
Patience Pays Off
Nothing really changes in Cincinnati, where star #1 target A.J. Green was surprisingly patient about getting the big deal he absolutely deserved. Green stated all summer he would never think about holding out, even while he watched the likes of Julio Jones, Dez Bryant and Demaryius Thomas all get their long-term deals before he did.
Waiting paid off for Green, who locked up a four-year, $60 million dollar deal that will keep him with the Bengals through 2019. One of the best wide receivers in the game, the 27-year old Green is a strong investment for a Bengals team that had made the playoffs every year he’s been with the team. With Green locked up well into his prime years, Cincy should remain a playoff favorite for years to come and could even possibly start thinking about a Super Bowl run.
Green dropped off a bit in 2014 due to lingering injuries, but still posted a fourth straight 1,000+ yard season despite playing hurt often and missing three games. Constantly held back by the average arm of Andy Dalton, Green and the Bengals may need a change under center to really take the next step going forward.
Overall, it’s clear deadlines make deals and the Giants and Bengals both were wise to lock up two very key players. New York and Cincinnati aren’t necessarily playoff locks with these guys in place, but they’d be absolutely lost without them. Manning and the Giants try to start the season hot on Sunday night against the Dallas Cowboys, while Green and the Bengals head to Oakland this weekend to tackle the Raiders.
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