Giants need Mario to be Super

As the 10th free agent signing this offseason, Manningham is just a small part of GM Jerry Reese's signing bonanza. Coming off a season in which he suffered multiple knee ligament tears, will Mario Manningham once again become a key player for Big Blue?

Following a two year detour in San Francisco, wide receiver Mario Manningham has returned to the Giants on a one year deal. Drafted out of the University of Michigan in 2008, Manningham didn't really gain any recognition until his second season with the Giants, in which he recorded 7 touchdowns and nearly 900 yards in 14 games played.

The following year Manningham continued to be a playmaker for the Giants, recording a career-high 60 receptions, and leading the Giants to win the NFC championship game. In 2011, Manningham made what some would call the play of his career during Super Bowl XLVI; a 38-yard sideline reception to set up the game winning drive against the New England Patriots.

With Victor Cruz and Rueben Randle predicted to be the No. 1 and 2 receivers, Manningham will still get his fair share of playing time. However, fans should keep their expectations in check.

Passing a physical is one thing, but not nearly as strenuous as real game situations can be. Now playing with a surgically repaired left knee, it's improbable that Manningham's performance will be on par with his initial four years in New York; in which the Giants reached the NFC championship game twice. Following his injury in 2012, Manningham only recorded a single touchdown and 51 receptions during his two years playing for the 49ers.

On the other hand, Eli Manning threw a career-high 27 interceptions last year and having a familiar face in the lineup could only benefit this limited passing squad. Manningham certainly seems happy to be back.

"I'm real excited," Manningham said. "It's just great to see everybody, be around familiar faces, knowing everybody in the past and just being comfortable around everybody."

Perhaps with the recent addition of offensive linemen Charles Brown and Geoff Schwartz, an improved O-line this year will lead to more frequent opportunities for Manningham to shine.


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