The easy answer is yes, based on other players in the Hallf of Fame, he 100% should be. If Joe Namath can get in the HoF with his awful fucking stats based on one Super Bowl win, Eli sure as shit deserves to get in with 2 Super Bowl wins.
Before I get started, let me also say I know how classy he is and how good of a guy he is and how much the media and Giants fans love him. I don’t really care about any of that when it comes to him making the HoF.
Eli is not an elite QB though. He never was elite in the NFL, but when it comes to being put in the HoF, he needs to stop being compared to QBs that played in the same era as him. Rather, he needs to be compared to QBs who are already in the HoF. Guys like Aikman and Namath are both in the HoF purely based on the fact that they were one of, if not the main piece on a Super Bowl winning team.
Namath: 50.1 Comp %; 27,663 Yards; 173 TDs; 220 Ints
Aikman: 61.5 Comp %: 32,942 Yards; 165 TDs; 141 Ints
Eli: 60.3 Comp %; 56,537 Yards; 362 TDS; 241 Ints
Now I know the league has changed a lot since both of these guys played QB, but if Namath can get in with those stats and a career losing record, every QB with a Super Bowl should be in the HoF. It’s almost a fucking joke. The guy would be a fuckin nobody if they had gotten blown out by the Colts like everyone expected.
Aikman was kind of a game manager. He didn’t throw as many passes as some of the other guys in the league because he didn’t really have to. He had the NFL’s all-time leading rusher in his backfield. His stats are pretty shitty too when you think of HoF QBs, but he wound up getting in because he was the QB for 3 Super Bowl winning teams.
Eli obviously played in this league in a much pass happier era than the other 2 guys, but his TD:Int ratio is significantly better than both of them. His QB Rating is better than both of those guys and he beat the 18-0 New England Patriots in the Super Bowl which he will always be remembered for. Actually, he will probably just be remembered as the Patriots killer as Eli went 3-1 against the Pats in the 5 year span from 07-12. The only loss was an extremely close Week 17 loss in that 07 season.
Let’s not be crazy either. Eli may have won the Super Bowl MVP, but the MVP of that Super Bowl was Steve Spagnuolo. He went up against the greatest offense we had ever seen at that time and held them to 17 points. They had not scored less than 20 in any game that season, plus they put up 38 on the same defense in Week 17 that year. Spagnuolo had 2 weeks to get his guys ready and boy did he ever. Brady was sacked 21 times during the entire 2007 season, good for about 1.5 per game. The Giants defense sacked Brady 5 times in that Super Bowl! 5 FUCKING TIMES! How can you sit here and tell me Eli had more of an impact on the game then the defense?! Eli was, per usual, extremely average going 19/34 with 255 yards, 2 TDs and 1 Pick. His 4th quarter play is what won him the MVP of that game, but let’s not forget that without David Tyree pinning the ball on his helmet, none of this would have happened. Eli escaped the pressure, but that was just a heave. Not a great throw from an elite QB. Either way, he was part of the most improbable Super Bowl win in NFL history. This alone would probably have gotten him into the HoF, but there was another one.
In the Super Bowl win people don’t talk about, Eli actually played great as they beat the Pats again. Eli was 30/40 for 296, 1 TD and a rating of 103.8. He obviously made the throw down the sideline to Manningham in this one, which was the best throw of his career.
Eli Manning has, at his best, been an above average QB over the course of his career. His best season in 2011 had him 4th in yards and 4th in TDs, but still only resulted in him having the 7th best QB rating at a 92.9. At his worst, Eli has been just plain fucking bad. In 2013 he had a 2:3 TD to Int ratio with a comp % below 58%. He has been about as average as you can be if you encompass his entire career. He has a record of 116-116, a 60% Completion %, a 3:2 TD to Int ratio, and a QB rating of 84.1 (which is actually below average). His QB Rating of 84.1 is good for 45th on the all-time. He is behind guys like Jay Cutler, Joe Flacco, and Jameis Winston during the regular season.
Now the Eli lovers will say he was a playoff QB, well let me tell you that his career 87.4 QB Rating in the playoffs is good for 18th all-time, tied with his brother Peyton. Ahead of him on this list are guys like Mark Sanchez, Tony Romo, and Joe Flacco. It is safe to say Eli has not been HoF worth when compared with QBs who played in the same era as him. But as it is, he is ahead of plenty of HoFers on both lists and that will get him in.
Eli Manning will be a Hall of Famer, there is no disputing that, and based on the merits of current Hall of Famers he absolutely should be. Maybe though, just maybe, we should start setting the standards a little higher for QBs to be elected into the HoF. Based on Eli getting in, every QB with a Super Bowl win after him will get in based on that alone. It will really diminish the accomplishment of getting chosen to be in the HoF completely.