Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley
In case you missed it, we're now doing a Saturday mailbag each week. Here's a sample of something that came up over the weekend:
Tsbein is one of our regulars in the "comments" section. And yes, I do read them: Eli has been "plagued," and I say that sarcastically, by his good team. He has the RBs, the O-line, the defense and had a top WR. Even Fran Tarkenton slighted Eli while trying to bash Favre. Since there are no stars as WRs, do you think a big year from Eli could garner him some nationwide respect?
Mosley: Tsbein, the second part of your question was quite astute, but we have a strict 300-word limit on questions in the mailbag! But seriously, I think it's ridiculous that Eli Manning still has so many doubters. He was one of my MVP candidates heading into December last season. I think the loss of Burress certainly hurt his production, but the defensive breakdowns had more to do with the team's "collapse" than anything else. Manning led his team to a world title in 2007. I'll never forget that when analyzing his career. And unlike some critics, I don't try to poke holes in that late-season run. He struggled down the stretch in '08, but overall, he had another excellent season. I have immense respect for Fran Tarkenton's career, but there's one thing missing that Eli already has. But in all honestly, Tarkenton's work on "That's Incredible" probably made up for not having a Lombardi.
Keep the e-mails and letters coming.
Update: You guys are a tough crowd this morning! I was just linking to the mailbag to let folks know it's something we're doing every week now. But my groundbreaking "copy and paste" approach has frustrated several loyal readers. Let me add this opinion on Manning to "freshen" things up a bit: I think he's hands down the best quarterback in the NFC East -- and perhaps the entire NFC. Would you rather have an aging Kurt Warner or Manning? Is it a no-brainer that you'd take Drew Brees over Eli Manning? We've seen Manning flourish on the game's biggest stage. That has to mean something. Let's see what he can do with a full offseason of preparing for life without Plaxico Burress. If he can take this team to a Super Bowl without Plax, then many of his doubters will finally be silenced.
OK, I have some more copy and pasting to do. See you in the noon hour.