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Kevin Gilbride predicts success ahead for Eli Manning

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Seriously, what else would you expect him to say?

Washington Redskins v New York Giants Photo by Rob Tringali/Sportschrome/Getty Images

Some might consider it wishful thinking. It is undoubtedly 100 percent what you would expect him to say. Former New York Giants offensive coordinator and now head coach of the XFL New York Guardians, said this week that he believes Eli Manning can still be a successful quarterback — provided he has a good offensive line.

“The one thing that I’ve always stated is that if Eli Manning has a quality offensive line then he’ll be a successful quarterback,” Gilbride said. “ When we were successful and won those Super Bowls and were near the top of the league offensively, it’s usually when we had an effective offensive line that allowed him to do the things that he does best. Which is, get everybody in a good position, recognize what’s happening defensively, and throw the ball accurately the right person and then keep the defense off the field. He’s always done that when he had the sufficient protection.

“Now, people get upset [and say] ‘Well, he can’t do this’ and ‘He can’t do that.’ … He’s never — from the day he got there — solved problems with his feet,” he added. “It’s always been with his brain and his arm. I think it looks like, and you never know until the season starts, but from what I can tell, It looks like they’ve shored up the offensive line and it looks like if that has happened, I expect him to have a good year.”

Speaking at a press event to unveil the name of the XFL franchise he will coach, Gilbride, who won two Super Bowls while calling plays for Manning, added this:

“It’s going to be up to Eli, and his teammates obviously, to play well enough for him to stay in that spot,” Gilbride said. “I have a suspicion that he’ll do just that, again, because he’s the competitor that he is, I can assure you that he’s not relinquishing that position very easily.”