A Giant Trade: Marcus Mariota to New York?

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Over the next two weeks, FishDuck.com Feature Writer Caleb Couturie will be analyzing the 25 teams in the NFL Draft that may look to select Marcus Mariota.

**DISCLAIMER: This is part of a project FOR FUN. All trades suggested are merely hypotheticals, and do not reflect my actual opinion of what will happen on draft day. Enjoy.**

Previous Article: Click here

No. 8: The New York Giants

NYG’s Draft Pick: Ninth

NYG’s 2015 Cap Space: $16,921,246

NYG’s Top Needs: OL, LB, DE

Eli Manning was better this year than he was last year; that much is true. When one considers just how bad Manning was last year though, it’s not saying much. After leading the league with 27 interceptions in 2013, Manning saw his INT numbers shrink by half, back down to 14. The only problem? That still placed him in the top eight QBs in the league. Not only were his INT numbers still high, but he finished outside the top 14 QBs in completion percentage and QBR. In fact, the majority of Manning’s success this year appeared to solely come from the emergence of Odell Beckham Jr.

Maybe it was just coincidence, but for the first four games of the season Manning’s TD-to-INT ratio was 9:5, and once OBJ rejoined the lineup, his next four games saw that same ratio shift to 7:0. Perhaps Manning’s most telling stat, however, was his record against quality opponents. Although the blame obviously can’t be placed on him alone, his Giants were 1-9 against teams with a .500 record or better. That record includes a six-game streak in which the Giants lost all their games against quality opponents. This is all a long way of saying the Giants have a team with a lot of young talent, especially on offense, and it would be a shame to watch that go to waste. Although Manning has an excellent track record come playoff time, he’s now 34 years old. Is it time for the Giants to start thinking about his replacement?

HOW IT CAN HAPPEN:

2015 is the last season of Manning’s contract, after which he may still be looking for big money (i.e. the same ridiculous amount of money some other QBs have been offered in recent years *cough*Jay Cutler*cough*). If the Giants can’t afford to keep him, or even don’t want to keep him, they need to be thinking about his replacement in this year’s draft. So, here would be the blockbuster trade that could bring Marcus Mariota to New York.

Giants Trade: Eli Manning, 2015 first-round pick, and 2016 second-round pick.

Tampa Bay Trades: 2015 No. 1 pick.

A lot of things make sense about this trade. For starters, Tampa Bay is a team in desperate need of a QB. Although it would be nice to believe that Mariota or Jameis Winston are for sure going to be franchise QBs, it simply doesn’t work that way. Both come with major warning signs, and for the Bucs to instead be offered a proven QB like Manning, they’d have to take the Giants up on that. Plus, unlike the Giants, the Bucs have the salary cap space to be able to give Manning the type of money he’ll probably be looking for.

For New York, the Giants are able to move Eli a year before his contract year while still getting a quality deal in return. Although the trade would probably be unpopular at first, the upside of taking Mariota could be too much for the Giants to pass on. The Hawaiian brings a whole different skill set than what the Giants are used to with Manning — including much better decision making — and with an offense absolutely loaded with talented guys who are 25 years old or younger, this could be one of the most dynamic young offenses in the league.

HOW MARIOTA WOULD DO IN NEW YORK:

Above I mentioned the 25 and younger club, and I wasn’t exaggerating on just how good they were last year. OBJ (22) turned in one of the best performances by a rookie WR in recent memory, leading the Giants in yards, receptions and touchdowns. Not far behind him was Rueben Randle (23), who finished second on the team in receptions and yards. Together, the two of them accounted for half the team’s total yards receiving and touchdown receptions. Now, if we were to expand the age range by just one year, TE Larry Donnell (26) would also make the cut as a young talent. The big TE finished third on the Giants squad in receptions, and was behind only OBJ in touchdown receptions.

As for the backfield, Andre Williams (22) led the Giants in both yards rushing and touchdowns once he took over for the injured Rashad Jennings. Basically, that’s a long-winded way of saying Mariota would have plenty of young talent surrounding him while he grew into his new system. As for the city itself, where better to play football than New York? He’d have die hard fans, and he’d be in one of the biggest markets for football in the world. Plus, as a bonus for the Giants, this could be a giant middle finger to the Eagles who are debatably their biggest rivals.

WOULD HE START?:

It’s possible. In the NFC East, one of the weakest divisions in terms of pass defense, he actually should see decent success for a rookie. Just look at what RG3 did back in 2012. Mariota is like a healthier version of RG3, who in his first year was able to throw for 20 touchdowns with only five interceptions. With Manning gone, it’s hard to find a QB on the Giants roster who’d start over Mariota.

QUICK HITS:

NYG’s Projected Record with Mariota: 9-7

NYG’s Projected Record W/O Mariota: 5-11

Mariota’s first year stats: 3,600 yards/24 pass TDs/7 INTs/6 Rushing TDs

Top Photo by commons.wikipedia.org

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Caleb Couturie

Caleb Couturie

Caleb is a sophomore at the University of Oregon intending to double major in Journalism and Sports Management. He is the Managing Editor for FishDuck.com, along with being a lifetime Saints and San Francisco Giants fan, as Caleb fell in love with sports at a young age and developed that love into a passion for sports analysis. He is looking forward to cheering on the Ducks throughout his career at Oregon, and is always willing to talk sports with any fellow fan.

  • Caleb, you scare me! Let the Giants keep Eli Manning. I assure you, Lovie Smith and Jason Licht don’t want him. He carries too hefty a price tag. Furthermore, he’s got no legs. The game is changing to a mobile QB. Those days of having 10 men block so one guy can throw a ball… are over! The Bucs would be daft to trade a No. 1 Draft Pic for a spoiled, expensive, despicable QB. Same goes for other QBs that teams want to trade for the Bucs First Pic: Ben Roethlisberger, Nick Foles, Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez, Geno Smith, Matthew Stafford. It won’t happen!

    • Caleb

      Probably not, you’re right. But it’s fun to think about!

    • Kc44

      It’s more likely Eli goes on to win a third ring by the time Mariota ends up as a career backup.

      • KC, Eli won’t be getting a third ring. And big brother Paycheck Manning won’t either. Put your money on Marcus. He’s the real thing.

  • No.

  • jim

    much better decision making? the man’s still a COLLEGE PLAYER! we won’t know his decision making until he’s on the field with other pros. Who in their right mind would give up a TWO TIME SUPERBOWL MVP for an unproven?

    • Caleb

      Every Qb’s career comes to an end at some point man. Eli was great for the Giants, but he’s losing his touch. OBJ saved him this year.

      • Tim Hicks

        The ball didn’t throw itself.

        • Caleb

          True, however when you consider the standard WR in the NFL there are certain plays that OBJ made that if it had been literally anyone else, those aren’t completions. The ball didn’t throw itself, just like how it didn’t catch itself.

          • Kc44

            Wtf

  • marc ribaudo

    Most stupidest trade ballyhoo I’ve ever heard in my life. If the Giants were to trade Eli, this yrs # 1 and next yrs # 1 for Mariota I’d pay for the plane and banner to fly repeatedly over the meadowlands calling for Jerry Reese’s head. You can’t be serious. I definitely laughed real hard tho.

    • Caleb

      It just depends on how the Giants value Mariota. Eli isn’t getting any younger, and last time I checked he hasn’t played that well recently, either. I know he won two super bowls, and that’s great, but so much of both of those Super Bowls were due to outside factors Eli had no control over. I love Eli, I really do, but his time is running out.

      • Tim Hicks

        Last time you checked he hadn’t played well?
        4,410 yds, 30 td 14 into and 92.1 qbr
        I’ll take those stats any year. But I guess the defense and other factors contributed to that too…. And as a fan of Eli I assume you watch every Giants game? Because I know of one terrible season for eli that was on him (last year) but any true fan knows that numerous wrong routes and dropped or passes tipped by receivers that led to interceptions, and a lack of a true running game hinder any quarterbacks ability to play well… But when the run game plays, so does eli…

        • Caleb

          Those are great stats, yes, but he also played in an offense last year that allowed him to throw over 600 times. There are a lot of QBs who could throw for 4400 yards if they were given that many attempts. In fact, if you were to measure by yards per attempt, twelve different QBs would’ve thrown for more yards than Eli did last year. That includes Brian Hoyer and Mark Sanchez. Just some things to think about.

          • Tim Hicks

            Let’s just say he threw 600 times, but I guess you can say 601 is over 600, but he was in a completely different offense the prior year and threw 50 less passes… And he’s thrown for similar stats on throwing in the low 500’s… So I really don’t see how this argument is valid…

          • Kc44

            What the hell is this fool talking about? Everytime I scroll down, I’m subjected to an even worse pile of crap than the previous.

      • Kc44

        You’re full of crap. How do people who have no clue wth they are watching feel like they should write articles about the crap they know nothing about? It pisses me off. Outside factors Eli had no control over? What. The. ****? The bull AHoles write about Eli is beyond belief.

      • marc ribaudo

        I agree about Eli’s time is running out. I just don’t think trading him and a top 10 pick this year and who knows where next year is a feasible move. I also don’t think Mariota is worthy of mortgaging the future on. His arm strength is a major concern of mine. Just my observation of him. Whoever ends up with him will need a strong running game. Kind of like what Russell Wilson is to the Seahawks. Hopefully the Giants can solve their lack of run blocking, because its been horrible for a few years now. They could trade down this year if a sure fire OL isn’t sitting there when they pick at 9. That isn’t the Giants style tho and they’ll likely just resort to the best player available mantra. There are alot of concerns with the team. Hopefully the re-hiring of Spags will kick start their soft defense and go back to a more attacking form. Spags was always smart when it came to game time changes, unlike Fewell. We have good man corners with Prince and Cromartie. Sorry if I came off as rude Caleb.

        • Caleb

          Please, compared to some of the stuff I get from writing these you’re a down right Saint. Also, I agree with a lot you have to say. I think it’s probably a little early for the Giants to be thinking Eli’s replacement, AND I also agree that for Mariota to really excel in the NFL he’ll need a set up like what Seattle has (he’s basically Wilson but five inches taller). The one thing I will say though is that arm strength should not be your concern. Mariota’s got a cannon, and he can really put some zip on the ball if he needs to. Your concern should be, and its my major concern as well, is downfield accuracy. There were throws of 15+ yards down the field that he should’ve hit 100 times out of 100 last year but instead missed on multiple occasions. Then again, Wilson had the same issues. It’s kind of scary how similar the two are.

  • Pat Louise

    I’d take eli over 99 percent of the QBs in the NFL in my book only Rodgers and Brady are better. So to trade all that away plus Eli for a unproven Collage kid that’s going to cost us more money and cap space is not only crazy..its just plain stupid.

    • Caleb

      You think Eli is better than Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, and Andrew Luck? Wow.

  • Kc44

    Are you dumb? OBJ missed more than one quarter of the season in the beginning and Eli Manning was putting up those numbers WITHOUT HIM. He was throwing to Randle, Donnell and Parker behind a pathetic Oline. Bet this idiot doesn’t even know who those receivers are. Where do these morons come from? And they always preface this pile of crap with THIS IS JUST FOR FUN.

    Btw, Mariota has NFL bust written all over him. He better pray Chip Kelly makes a play for him. He’ll need an innovative coach to turn him into something.

    • max2001

      It’s pretty scary the disrespect Eli gets from fans who “claim” to love him, no, really, they really do. Lol

    • Caleb

      Okay, so this is “just for fun.” I recognize the Giants would most likely never do this in a million years, and since I mentioned both Randle and Donnell (and although I didn’t mention Preston Parker I certainly know who he is and what he brought to the team), you can go ahead and throw that part out the window. Oh, and Mariota has “NFL Bust” written all over him just about as much as Russell Wilson did. Don’t come in assuming I’m an idiot when the same argument you use for why Eli was so good (backup WRs, shit O-line) are the same issues Mariota struggled with and still excelled. I mean for God’s sake Mariota had four of his top five WRs out in the Natty. That’s like the Giants’ best receiving options being Daniel Fells and Preston Parker. Oh, and finally OBJ didn’t miss more than one quarter of the season. He missed four games, which is (obviously) exactly one quarter. Thanks for the read.

  • max2001

    I kind of wish I never clicked on this, and realize it’s just a “joke” as the writer claims, but I think you’re being obtusely unfair to Eli Manning. First of all, forget that the Giants would laugh in your face with this idea, but you never even mention how FAST Eli switched offenses. The fact that he did it almost seamlessly so you never even factored it in is impressive.

    This QB changed his footwork that he had since high-school. Do you understand how difficult that is? Probably not.

    He had ankle surgery in the off season and never missed a beat. He had no OLINE. John Jerry? Dallas Reynolds? Charlie Brown? The Saints couldn’t get rid of Brown fast enough for fear he’d get Brees killed. I repeat, Eli had no Oline. John Mara has publically put Jerry Reese on notice this year. Fix the Oline or you’re fired. Reese failed last year. He won’t get another chance.

    In spite of that, Eli put up VERY impressive numbers and cut his INTS in half one year out of Gilbride’s vertical offense which is immensely QB unfriendly. If Mariota played in it, he would be horrendous.

    In all honesty, Mariota couldn’t play in it. He doesn’t have the throwing talent Eli does and the intelligence. But then, there are only two maybe three QBs playing today that can make the throws Eli can. The Giants would laugh in your face at this “fun little scenario” of yours. But since you didn’t write this to gain any legit football credibility, carry on.

    • Caleb

      Okay, I hear you. This is the only credible argument I’ve heard thus far, and I actually agree with a lot that you had to say. My only points would be that Eli is approaching his contract year, and at 35 years old the Giants are going to have a big decision to make. Eli’s good, and you’re right his ability to transition into a new offense was very impressive, however how much longer does he have before his physical tools start to regress more so than they already have? I mean just look at his brother, debatably the best QB in the NFL, who quite possibly will retire at 38. Every QB has an expiration date.

  • Gman

    Since you wasted my time with your article, I’m going all in just to reiterate my fellow commentators. This is the STUPIDEST idea I’ve ever heard. Don’t post jokes. They make you sound very uninformed.

    • Caleb

      If you don’t like it, don’t read it.

  • DanC

    Plain and simple the giants best chance at going to the playoffs and winning another sb is eli manning. This article is a joke n a waste of time.