TAKING ELI MANNING OFF ESPN 1050 IS THE RESULT OF GROWING GIANTS-JETS AIR WAVE WAR
Excerpt: "In early March, Eli Manning hosted an
“Evening With Eli,” at the New York Athletic Club in conjunction with ESPN-1050.
For eight years, the Giants’ two-time Super Bowl MVP participated in a weekly
segment on the radio station.
At the dinner, both Manning and ESPN-1050 suits prominently announced they
would happily extend their relationship for several more years. Two weeks later,
according to radio and NFL sources, the relationship between Manning and
ESPN-1050 was over.
ESPN-1050 was informed Manning would not be coming back as a regular on “The
Michael Kay Show.” Instead, he was heading to WFAN, the Giants’ flagship radio
By all accounts, Manning did not make this decision on his own. He enjoyed
doing his weekly spot and was compensated well. Money was not the issue. Manning
also had no problem with the fact 1050 is the radio home of the Jets.
And during his 1050 tenure, no one at WFAN tried to lure him to the
Why did the situation change? Who put the kibosh on Manning continuing his
relationship with 1050?
All paths lead to the increased flow of bad blood between the Jets and
Giants. It finally occurred to Giants brass that having the face of their
franchise as a featured voice on the radio home of the Jets was a terrible
Although the Giants walked away from last season on top of the football
world, management is still angered over Jet brass covering those Giants Super
Bowl logos with curtains in MetLife Stadium before Jets hosted the Giants on
Christmas Eve. They also haven’t forgotten how Gang Green put a picture of
Manning being crushed from behind by Calvin Pace on the
cover of their defensive playbook heading into that game.
“More than all that, I believe (Giants co-owner) John Mara was not exactly
thrilled over Eli being on the Jets
station throughout the Giants Super Bowl year,” the NFL source said.
The radio whereabouts of Giants players is likely not on Mara’s radar, but we
could see how the Manning-1050 alliance eventually stuck in his craw. And if he
did ask Manning to make the radio switch, what’s Eli going to say, “No”? Giants
ownership has made their QB one of the NFL’s highest-paid players.
Nonetheless, the bad blood thing is still in play. After Manning jumped ship,
ESPN-1050 tried to negotiate a deal with Victor Cruz. A source
close to Cruz said he was told Giants players were now prohibited from being
paid regulars “on a non-Giants station.”
Don’t discount WFAN, tired of the buzz and ratings ESPN-1050 was generating
with the QB (remember Kay’s “elite Eli” interview), trying to exert whatever
pressure it could to bring in Manning." Read more...