Eli Manning and Davis Webb locker next to each other in the New York Giants’ training facility. That, of course, is no accident. It gives Webb, the rookie third-round pick a chance to be as close as possible to the two-time Super Bowl MVP.
On Tuesday, though, it apparently led to an awkward situation.
Manning always speaks to the media horde on Tuesday. Webb is usually left alone to listen, with perhaps a couple of media members stopping by to talk. Tuesday, though, with all of the speculation about the rookie perhaps getting some playing time at the veteran’s expense during this otherwise lost season for the Giants, both players were in demand.
Which made for a crowd in the corner of the locker room, and the oddity of Manning seeing a media frenzy near him that wasn’t for him.
Manning, for his part, said he “didn’t hear coach Ben McAdoo’s comments on Monday that he would be open to eventually giving Webb some snaps.
“My goal is to prepare every week and do my job,” Manning said.
Since taking over for Kurt Warner in the middle of the 2004 season, that job has been to start at quarterback for the Giants. He will do that for the 208th straight time on Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers.
Manning said he understands the speculation about Webb playing considering the Giants’ 1-7 record. That, though, doesn’t mean the 36-year-old has to be happy about about the idea of giving up snaps to the rookie.
“I want to play. That’s what I like to do,” Manning said. “I like to play football and play quarterback and I take – I understand that I got a job to do and I got to do it better and do it well and get wins and if you don’t everybody’s job is up for grabs in this league.”
The apprentice gets the spotlight
Webb, as you can see from the photo above, also spoke to a large contingent of media. He played it nicely.
"Nothing (changes with the speculation). My job is to be the best teammate that I can be, and to me, that's helping Eli, that's helping our receivers and our offense get touchdowns on the board and help our team win," Webb said, batting back the speculation he may soon see the field in mop-up duty - or more. "That's my role on the team right now." ...
"[I'll] be a sponge and learn from one of the best players to ever play this game. The best quarterback ever for this franchise," Webb said. "There have only been six other guys to throw for 50,000 yards. He's been a heck of a teammate. He's been helping me a bunch. I've learned so much from him."
Tuesday was the first truly awkward locker room moment between the present franchise QB and the guy who might be the future one. It probably won’t be the last.