Eli Manning has been named a finalist to the Walter Payton Man of the year award. He is one of three players who have been nominated for the award that recognizes excellence from an NFL player on and off the field. Each team nominates one player that demonstrates these traits and they have been narrowed down to three.
The winner will be revealed on February 6th, the night before the Super Bowl. The other players who are nominated are veterans Anquan Boldin and Benjamin Watson of the 49ers and Saints respectively. Eli Manning hopes to be the first Giants player to win the award over the course of its 46-year history.
It will be an action packed weekend for the Manning family that weekend, as Peyton Manning will lead the Broncos in the Super Bowl against the Carolina Panthers.
Both Manning brothers have a great impact on others both on the field and in the community. Eli Manning has done many great things for the community. He has helped lead the “Tackle Kids’ Cancer” initiative, has served on the chair of the New York March for Babies for the past seven years, and even founded the Eli and Abby Manning Chidren’s Clinic, after realizing the lack of children’s hospitals in the state of Mississippi. Manning also is a part of numerous other community efforts, and has consistently donated great amounts of time and money to good charitable causes.
Inside the lines, Manning had a great season despite the team’s struggles. He threw for 4,432 yards and 35 touchdowns while limiting his interceptions to just 14.
Manning’s impact on both the New York community as well as communities in areas that he cares about can give us some perspective on how these players can have an impact that extends beyond the game.
Regardless of who is named the winner of the award, all of the finalists as well as their communities are winners. Eli Manning did mention that his father played at the same time as Walter Payton and has some great stories of him and his character, and is honored to be up for the award. Manning has been the Giants’ man of the year from 2007-2013.