"My gut right now says Eli should be the starter", Spagnuolo said in explaining the move after practice Wednesday. He had walked into Spagnuolo's office on Monday after McAdoo was sacked and told the former defensive coordinator that he wanted to start again.
As Giants owner John Mara said in his press conference Monday, this season was "the ideal storm", as four of the team's star receivers went down with injuries, including Odell Beckham Jr., who was expected to be one of the league's leaders.
During Gruden's Monday Night Football broadcast between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals, his co-host Sean McDonough asked him if he would consider the recently vacant NY job. I particularly want to thank the entire coaching staff for their dedication and hard work. The streak was the second-longest in National Football League history, only surpassed by Brett Favre (297).
The overwhelming love and support he received from fans, teammates and former teammates and, of course, father Archie and family helped him through the anguish of temporarily losing his job, his streak, his team. I just felt like we needed a complete overhaul.
"I just wanted him to know that I do want to play".
"It was good to see 10 in there", Justin Pugh said.
And since the Giants might draft their prospective quarterback of the future next spring, Manning acknowledged that his future with the franchise that drafted him 13 years ago was in jeopardy. Combined with the team's 2-10 record and other problems, it led co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch to fire McAdoo and general manager Jerry Reese on Monday.
As for next season, Manning said: "I don't know what's going to happen". "What happened, happened. In the long run, hopefully it's a really good thing. Once you see guys in that locker room start to give these anonymous reports about how he's handling them and practice on (Saturday), that's how you know he's completely lost the locker room and completely lost the players".
Spagnuolo was not sure whether the evaluation would be done, adding his goal is to win games.
Manning is the stalwart the Giants need in the time of turmoil. Smith is expected to return in a backup role while rookie Davis Webb remains the third-stringer.
But when asked if Webb would handle the scout-team duties by himself this week, Spagnuolo said, "Probably not this week".
"I am just going to continue to be the same guy, continue to support my guys, my teammates", said Smith, a former Jet who was signed as a free agent in the offseason.
"I'll call it drills where Davis has done things where he would do as he prepared to be a one or a two". The Giants will also attempt to take advantage of Dallas' aggressive front four with screen passes to their running backs.
"I'm not anxious about the end", Manning said. Pugh and RB Wayne Gallman (hip), LB B.J. Goodson (ankle) and DT Damon Harrison (elbow) were limited.