ARTICLE: AIKMAN: 'OFF' Season Hurting Eli's Progress

Discussion in 'NFL Zone' started by WoodysGirl, Jul 12, 2006.

  1. WoodysGirl

    WoodysGirl U.N.I.T.Y Staff Member

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    July 12, 2006 -- Troy Aikman said yesterday that one of the major reasons why he's gearing up for his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame is that he was surrounded by Cowboys Emmitt Smith and Michael Irvin, great players who put winning and unselfishness above individual exploits.

    A bit later, Aikman wondered aloud if Eli Manning enjoys unmitigated support from some of his key offensive teammates.

    "I think it's unfortunate that here he is, as a quarterback going into his third season, and he's not given the opportunity to throw to his top three wide receivers throughout the offseason," Aikman said on a conference call. "I think that's a real mistake, for Jeremy Shockey, Plaxico Burress and Sinorice Moss not to be there with Eli Manning, getting some timing down. I don't think you can get that in just a mini-camp, I don't think you can get it in four weeks of training camp.

    "It takes a lot of time and a lot of repetition, and they're not getting that kind of time, and maybe that lends itself a little bit to some of the inaccuracies that Eli had last year."

    Aikman, the former quarterback and current lead football analyst on Fox, nearly got it right. Shockey and Burress eschewed the Giants offseason workout program, preferring to spend their time in Miami. Moss, a rookie receiver from the University of Miami, did work out at Giants Stadium and attended all his required sessions.

    As one of six new members of the Hall of Fame's Class of 2006, Aikman gets enshrined Aug. 6 in Canton. It's far too early to determine if such glory awaits Manning, who guided the Giants to an 11-5 finish and division title last year but tailed off drastically in the second half of the season.

    "I think his development is really where it should be," Aikman said of Manning. "He went through a stretch where he was able to win some games late, and immediately he got labeled as if he had already arrived. Then when he went through a period last year when he was struggling a little bit . . . and everybody then wanted to say, 'What's wrong with Eli?'

    "I don't think anything has been wrong with him. I just don't think he's been given an opportunity to really grow into the position and learn the game at this level at the rate that most quarterbacks get. He really hasn't had a chance his whole life to do that. He's always been measured against what his brother [Peyton] and his father [Archie] have accomplished.

    "I think he's doing just fine. There are areas of his game he's got to get better [at] if he's going to be able to continue to make the improvements I know he wants to make. If that team is going to be able to make the improvements from where they were a year ago, a lot of that improvement is going to rest on the development of Eli Manning."

  2. dmq

    dmq If I'm so pretty, why am I available?

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    gees, and I thought Aikman's criticism was reserved to just us.
  3. CrazyCowboy

    CrazyCowboy Well-Known Member

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    Troy will tell it like it is.........
  4. ravidubey

    ravidubey Active Member

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    Troy has exacting standards for quarterbacks. I think it really bugs him when he sees guys wasting their potential by not working as hard as he did. But his criticism is also self-serving as it reinforces his own successful practice habits and career.
  5. Aikmaniac

    Aikmaniac Well-Known Member

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    I wonder if Troy mentioned, during the phone call, that he really couldn't throw the deep ball?
  6. MossTDMossTD

    MossTDMossTD New Member

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    I find it hard to imagine a guy who is getting inductedinto the Pro Football HoF has to "reinforces his own successful practice habits and career".

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