Throughout the entire offseason, during training camp and right up until the conclusion of the preseason, New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning appeared to be verbally beaten from every angle. Anyone with any sort of a platform — from fans to analysts — have taken aim at the two-time Super Bowl MVP, questioning his skill level, his age, his IQ, his looks, his ability to succeed in a West Coast-style offense and pretty much anything else you can possibly imagine. It's for the reason, we've dubbed 2014 the "Year of Eli Bashing."
"What I see is a very talented guy who certainly has unique abilities to move his team and score, which no matter what the stats might say, this guy is dangerous, and I think he has proven that over time," Caldwell said. "You don’t win two Super Bowls without having an unusual skill set. I happen to know a bit about his family. I know one thing, and that is you better prepare for him just like you would anybody else that is as talented as him. He can hurt you."
Despite the Giants' offensive struggles during the preseason, Caldwell thoroughly warned his team that if they underestimate the youngest Manning, he will beat them. Accordingly, he and the Detroit Lions are ready for a far better product than what Big Blue put on the field during their five preseason games.
"Eli is a hard worker, dedicated to his craft and a great leader," Caldwell added. "I don’t think there is any point in time where he is not starting the season with great resolve and trying to find a way to better every single day. Like I told our guys, ‘You better get ready for this guy because he is a very talented individual and he’s been around the block a little bit.’ "
Earlier on Thursday, Giants head coach Tom Coughlin shared some similar sentiments about Manning, saying his quarterback is extremely focused and you can see it in his face that he's ready to return to an elite level.
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