This is not a debate about him staying or not, but rather who really has the proven separation speed that he did when he was the 3rd option. Truth be told, he was the true burner of the receiving core. Yes, I know, some on this board think he was a dumb, stupid, idiot, jerk, hooked on phonics, short yellow bus receiver. I got that. Some just hated the guy because it made them feel good. Hixon is a nice guy and knows the playbook, but he simply doesn't posses separation speed, nor is he a consistently good route runner. Nice guys don't necessarily get open. He had a nice catch against the Cowboys, but I've re watched that game a few times now, and games from three years ago, and he simply cannot separate on a consistent basis. He also has no upside.
That being said, our opponents actually prepared for Manningham as if he was a number 1 or 2 option. There were games a couple of years ago when Steve Smith and Nicks were both out at the same time and he filled in nicely, with the Giants winning all of those games. Sure he made mistakes. Hasn't Nicks and Cruz? If Ruben Randle is as NFL ready as Reese and Coughlin have stated, then why hamper his development by not starting him immediately as the 3rd option? It makes no sense. You don't think Manningham was critical to our playoff success and second Super Bowl trophy?
I'm tired of hearing about the possible potential of Jernigan and Barden. Let's see it. NOW! Nicks simply does not look ready. His foot could possibly be a season long problem. We need another reliable target who can get open regardless of Nick's status. I think that can be Randle, but we won't know unless Coughlin plays him more. When Nicks was out for a few games in the past, I didn't panic because of Manningham. That underestimated security blanket is gone, so someone had better show and tell ASAP. Oh, and please, don't compare Manningham's current status with SF. It has nothing to do with what he provided for this team. Different team, system and QB.