For fans, this is Ernie Acorsi’s 2003 scouting report to the Mara family on why the NY Giants should reach out for Eli Manning. Incredibly accurate insights.

Hat tip Arthur Cashin, UBS

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Subject: Arcorsi’s note to Mara from ole miss from 2003

WEARS LEFT KNEE BRACE… DURING PREGAME WARMUP, DIDN’T LOOK LIKE HE HAD A ROCKET ARM… AS GAME PROGRESSED, I SAW EXCELLENT ARM STRENGTH UNDER PRESSURE AND THE ABILITY TO GET VELOCITY ON THE BALL ON MOST THROWS. GOOD DEEP BALL RANGE. GOOD TOUCH. GOOD VISION AND POISE.

SEES THE FIELD… IN A SHOTGUN ON MOST PLAYS AND HIS ONLY RUNNING OPTION IS A DRAW… HIS OFFENSIVE LINE IS POOR. RED-SHIRT FRESHMAN LEFT TACKLE. ELI DOESN’T TRUST HIS PROTECTION. CAN’T. NO WAY CAN HE TAKE ANY FORM OF DEEP DROP AND LOOK DOWNFIELD. WITH NO RUNNING GAME (10 YARDS RUSHING THE FIRST HALF0 AND NO REAL TOP RECEIVERS, HE’S STUCK WITH THREE-STEP DROPS AND WAITING TIL THE LAST SECOND TO SEE IF A RECEIVER CAN GET FREE. NO TIGHT END EITHER. NO FLAIRING BACK. SO HE’S TAKING SOME BIG HITS. TAKING THEM WELL. CARRIED AN OVERMATCHED TEAM ENTIRELY ON HIS SHOULDERS. I IMAGINE, EXCEPT FOR VANDERBILT, HIS TEAM IS OVERMATCHED IN EVERY SEC [SOUTHEAST CONFERENCE] GAME… HE’S BIG, NEVER GETS RATTLED. RALLIED HIS TEAM FROM A 14-3 HALF-TIME DEFICIT BASICALLY ALL BY HIMSELF. LED THEM ON TWO SUCCESSIVE THIRD QUARTER DRIVES TO GO AHEAD, 17-16. THE FIRST TOUCHDOWN, ON A 40-YARD STREAK DOWN THE LEFT SIDELINE, HE DROPPED THE BALL OVER THE RECEIVER’S RIGHT SHOULDER. CALLED THE NEXT TOUCHDOWN PASS HIMSELF, CHECKING OFF TO A 12-YARD SLANT… MAKES A LOT OF DECISIONS ON PLAY CALLS AT THE LINE OF SCRIMMAGE, BUT THEY ASK TOO MUCH OF HIM. THEY DON’T LET HIM JUST PLAY. THIS IS A GUY YOU SHOULD JUST LET PLAY… WHEN HE’S INACCURATE, HE’S USUALLY HIGH, BUT RARELY OFF TARGET TO EITHER SIDE… PLAYS SMART AND WITH COMPLETE CONFIDENCE. DOESN’T SCOLD HIS TEAMMATES, BUT LETS THEM KNOW WHEN THEY LINE UP WRONG OR RUN THE WRONG PATTERN… THREW THREE INTERCEPTIONS. TWO WERE HIS FAULT. TRYING TO FORCE SOMETHING BOTH TIMES. HE COULD HAVE RUN ON ONE OF THEM, A FOURTH DOWN PLAY. HE HAS A LOT TO LEARN.

SUMMARY: I THINK HE’S THE COMPLETE PACKAGE. HE’S NOT GOING TO BE A FAST RUNNER, BUT A LITTLE LIKE JOE MONTANA, HE HAS ENOUGH ATHLETIC ABILITY TO GET OUT OF TROUBLE. REMEMBER HOW ARCHIE RAN? IN THAT DEPARTMENT, ELI DOESN’T HAVE THE BEST GENES, ALTHOUGH I NEVER TIMED MOM OLIVIA IN THE 40. BUT HE HAS A FEEL FOR THE POCKET. FEELS THE RUSH THROWS THE BALL, TAKES THE HIT, GETS RIGHT BACK UP… HAS COURAGE AND POISE. IN MY OPINION, MOST OF ALL, HE HAS THAT QUALITY THAT YOU CAN’T DEFINE. CALL IT MAGIC. AS [FORMER BALTIMORE COLTS DEFENSIVE BACK] BOBBY BOYD TOLD ME ONCE ABOUT UNITAS, “TWO THINGS SET HIM APART: HIS LEFT TESTICLE AND HIS RIGHT TESTICLE”… PEYTON HAD MUCH BETTER TALENT AROUND HIM AT TENNESSEE. BUT I HONESTLY GIVE THIS GUY A CHANCE TO BE BETTER THAN HIS BROTHER. ELI DOESNT GET MUCH HELP FROM THE COACHING STAFF. IF HE COMES OUT EARLY, WE SHOULD MOVE UP TO TAKE HIM. THESE GUYS ARE RARE, YOU KNOW. PEOPLE WILL SAY HE ISNT CONFIDENT. PEOPLE WILL SAY HE IS SOCIALLY AWKWARD AND INCAPABLE OF LEADING. THEY ARE WRONG. THIS KID IS A WINNER. LET’S DO WHATEVER WE CAN TO GET HIM. IT WILL BE THE DIFINING MOMENT OF THE FRANCHISE.

Category: Sports, Weekend

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5 Responses to “2003 College Scouting Report: Eli Manning”

  1. inessence says:

    Wow! Acorsi hit a bulls-eye with Eli!

  2. JoseOle says:

    Interesting, but before we declare Mr. Acorsi brilliant, it would be good to see his scouting reports on some notably under-rated gems (like Brady) and over-rated busts (like Ryan Leaf).

  3. mitchn says:

    Thanks for posting this. Like any NFL fan in NYC, I had heard about this report for years, but it’s a treat to actually read it. I like the Montana comparison and there’s no doubt in my mind that Eli will end up as the more accomplished (as measured by big wins) of the Manning boys. Hope Ernie got a bonus that year.

  4. anonRt says:

    The report ends at, “these guys are rare, you know.” Never saw those last lines about Eli being socially awkward. I don’t think Accorsi ever wrote that. Never saw it in the originals that we’re published in books about the Giants. Doesn’t sound like Accorsi either. A strange add in, IMO.

  5. anonRt says:

    Lol, “difining” is even misspelt.