When I first heard the chatter of "should Eli be in the hall of fame" my gut reaction was "of course not." I had to take a step back, have I fallen prey to modern times? It's no secret we have short attention spans, the ultimate "what have you done for me lately" attitudes. Blame technology, blame 24/7 news and sports-center, whatever the reason a 2 time Super Bowl Champion (2 Super Bowl MVPs) is now being questioned, with even some people saying he wasn't even that good.
This is going to require some digging so let's play the comparison game (Leader in each category in BOLD).
Player A: 1 Super Bowl Title (MVP); Rookie of the Year; 1,886-3,762 (50.1 %) for 27,663 yards, 173 TDs and 220 Int; 65.5 Rating; Record as starter (Regular season): 62-63-4
Player B: 9 Pro Bowls; 1 NFL MVP; 4,967-8,358 (59.4%) for 61,361 yards, 420 TDs and 252 Ints; 86.4 rating; Record as starter (Regular season): 147-93
Player C: 2 Super Bowl Titles (2x MVP); 4 Pro Bowls; 4,895-8,119 (60.3%) for 57,023 yards, 366 Tds and 244 Ints; 84.1 rating; Record as starter (Regular season): 117-117
Player D: 4 Super Bowl Titles (3x MVP); 8 Pro Bowls; 2x NFL MVP; 3,409-5,391 (63.2%) for 40,551 yds, 273 TDs and 139 Ints; 92.3 rating; Record as starter (Regular season): 117-47
Now let's add playoff stats in order of performance (Rating):
Player D: 95.6 Rating; 460-734 for 5,772 yards, 45 TDs and 21 Ints, 16-7 record
Player C: 87.4 Rating; 242-400 for 2,815 yards, 18 TDs and 9 Ints, 8-4 Record
Player B: 77.1 Rating; 385-687 for 4,510 yards, 32 TDs and 24 Ints, 8-10 Record
Player A: 54.6 Rating; 50-117 for 636 yards, 3 TDs and 4 Ints, 2-1 Record
So who's who? Player D is Joe Montana, Player C is Eli Manning, Player B is Dan Marino and Player A is Joe Namath. Obviously Namath played in a less advanced era of the league but we could all agree that by today's standards you'd be laughed out of the room suggesting he should be in the HOF. Well that's the disturbing part here, all 3 are in the HOF and we clearly see Eli Manning lived up to their standards. So what has changed? Why do we look at Eli differently, by different standards? Could it be because he's not charismatic? Unfortunately this is a fickle time in history, with instagram and snapchat filters, bots posting on facebook, satire news sites everywhere, information racing at us and ultimately a warped sense of what and who is really good or not.
The debate may be justified but in my opinion Eli Manning earned his way into the HOF, maybe not first ballot, he may not get in until he's 70 years old, but he has the stats, accolades and post season accomplishments to back up his case.