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August 18, 2015

Eli Manning reportedly wants to be NFL's highest paid player; RGIII thinks he's the best in the NFL

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081815EliManning John Minchillo/AP

Eli Manning and two other guys.

In 2014, the Giants started their season 3-9 and were irrelevant before December even began. The Eagles spanked them at home Week 6 to the tune of 27-0 and beat them in a meaningless Week 17 game at the Meadowlands. Eli Manning was less than spectacular in both games. 

Therefore, if you're an Eagles fan, you might not know it, but Eli Manning had a really good 2014 season. 

• His 92.1 QB rating was the third best of his career.

• His 30 TD passes were the second highest total of his career.

• His 14 INTs were the second lowest total of his career, excluding his rookie year, when he only played half the season.

• His 63.1% completion percentage was the best of his career.

• His 4,410 passing yards were the best of his career.

And yet, despite Manning's efforts, the Giants still went 6-10 because their defense and run game stunk.

Giants owner John Mara wants Manning to continue to be their quarterback, per the New York Daily News.

"We're going to try to lock him up," Mara said. "We're still having discussions with his agent and our goal is to still try to reach a contract with him, hopefully before the regular season starts or as soon thereafter as possible. There is no deadline on it right now."

Currently, Manning is the 17th highest paid quarterback in the NFL, but he is entering the final year of his contract, and he wants to be paid. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Manning wants to be the highest paid quarterback (and therefore, player) in the NFL.

Here is the $20 million/season quarterback club, via

 PlayerValue Avg/year Guaranteeed 
Aaron Rodgers $110,000,000 $22,000,000 $54,000,000 
 Russell Wilson$87,600,000 $21,900,000 $31,700,000 
 Ben Roethlisberger$87,400,000 $21,850,000 $34,250,000 
 Philip Rivers$83,250,000 $20,812,500 $37,500,000 
 Cam Newton$103,800,000 $20,760,000 $41,000,000 
 Matt Ryan$103,750,000 $20,750,000 $42,000,000 
 Joe Flacco$120,600,000 $20,100,000 $29,000,000 
 Drew Brees$100,000,000 $20,000,000 $40,000,000 

Obviously, the Giants don't want to pay Manning that kind of money, per the Daily News.

The Giants and Manning's agents have been talking for a while, but according to sources familiar with the situation, their proposals are not close. Manning, according to one source, is looking for a deal worth more than $20 million per season with more than $60 million guaranteed - numbers which as the News reported would put him in the top three among NFL quarterbacks in both categories.

The Giants are in a very difficult spot here. Manning will turn 35 in about four months, and while he played well last season, he's a year removed from his 2013 debacle in which he threw 27 INTs and had a QB rating of 69.4, which was lower than guys like Brandon Weeden, Chad Henne, E.J. Manuel, Christian Ponder, Case Keenum and Matt Cassel.

Manning has been great at the right time. He has two Super Bowl runs under his belt in which he was fantastic, but has otherwise been an average to slightly above average quarterback. In no way should he be paid like an elite quarterbacks like Rodgers. Clearly. 

But... In the NFL, you either have a quarterback, or you don't, and if you don't, you have no chance unless you have some kind of historic defense like the 2000 Ravens or 2002 Buccaneers. As noted above, the Giants' defense stinks.

A week ago, the Chargers and Philip Rivers agreed to a deal worth $20,812,500 per season, the fourth highest quarterback contract in the NFL. Manning's camp will point to the two Super Bowl rings as reason enough why he should be compensated higher than Rivers, at a minimum.

The Giants feel comfortable with Eli Manning. That's fine. But to keep him, they'll be wildly overpaying an erratic quarterback who will be locked into place until he's 37 or 38 years old. Of course, if they can't work out a deal, they, you know, won't have a competent quarterback under contract next offseason.

Robert Griffin III thinks he's the best quarterback in the NFL

In other NFC East quarterback news, Robert Griffin III thinks he's the best quarterback in the league. Frank Schwab of Yahoo pointed out that that the quote in full isn't as bad as social media reaction made it out to be. The full quote:

“I don’t feel like I have to come out here and show anybody anything or why I’m better than this guy or better than that guy. It’s more about going out and affirming that for me, I go out and I play, I know I’m the best quarterback on this team. I feel like I’m the best quarterback in the league and I have to go out and show that,” Griffin said, via the Washington Post. “Any athlete at any level, if they concede to someone else, they’re not a top competitor, they’re not trying to be the best that they can be. There’s guys in this league that have done way more than me. But, I still view myself as the best because that’s what I work toward every single day.”ow through everything that I’ve had to go through here in Washington and it’ll make me better for the future.”

Yeah, OK, so it's not "I'm the best quarterback ever, period." But come on. In games Robert Griffin III played the majority of the snaps in 2014, the Redskins went 1-6. He threw 4 TD passes on the season, was picked off 6 times, fumbled 9 times and was sacked 33 times. Maybe just don't say anything close to the quote above.

Follow Jimmy on Twitter: @JimmyKempski