Big Blue Morning: Trade Eli for No. 1 pick?

April, 16, 2014
Apr 16
9:15
AM ET
Mike Sando has an interesting piece Insider on ESPN.com looking at which current NFL quarterbacks would be worth trading the No. 1 overall pick in this year's draft. The premise is that the Houston Texans, who need a quarterback and have the No. 1 overall pick, are concerned about the quality of their choices and may opt not to take any of this year's quarterbacks No. 1 overall. So if, hypothetically, someone would trade them a quarterback for that pick, which quarterbacks would be worth it?

Manning
Mike asked ESPN analyst Bill Polian, ESPN.com scout Matt Williamson and an NFL GM which quarterbacks would be worth it. Polian and the GM both listed New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning among the answers. Matt did not, as Mike explains:
Williamson listed nearly as many quarterbacks (17) as the other two panelists combined, but he left off Manning after a brutal 2013 season.

"Eli did have a very unlucky year and he's had a lot going against him of late, but frankly, he hasn't played good football in a year and a half," Williamson said.

So Manning falls into Mike's "Close but note quite" category, behind the seven quarterbacks who fell into the "clearly worth a No. 1 overall pick" category. Those seven are Peyton Manning, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Ben Roethlisberger, Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson. Only two of those seven (Peyton Manning and Luck) actually were a No. 1 overall picks, as Eli Manning was.

I think if the Giants offered Eli Manning to the Texans for the No. 1 pick in this year's draft, the Texans would say yes before the Giants ended their first sentence. The question to you, Giants fans, is if you'd trade Eli Manning for this year's No. 1 pick.

I would not, personally. Making a deal like that would require the Giants to find a quarterback to replace Manning, and any of the quarterbacks available in this year's (or any year's) draft would count themselves lucky to have half the career Manning already has had. The Giants have a franchise quarterback -- something not even half of the teams in the league can claim. There's no price to be put on that.

But what do you think?

Dan Graziano

ESPN New York Giants reporter

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