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Giants GM praises Eli Manning, unsure on drafting QB

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New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman has many difficult decisions to make coming into his first year back with the team. He answered the club's first major question mark when he officially hired Vikings offense coordinator Pat Shurmur this week to be Big Blue's 18th coach in franchise history.

Gettleman explained his reasoning for hiring Shurmur this week in a preview of Friday's introductory news conference, saying, "I really believe the head coach job for the New York Football Giants is a job for an adult." Gettleman then clarified that he perceived Shurmur, a 52-year-old human to be "an adult. He's mature. He's got wisdom. He's very even-keeled."

The next two big moves have to do with his two franchise players in Eli Manning and Odell Beckham. Will Gettleman ship out Eli and his $22.2 million salary to make room for a new QB room? Can the new GM negotiate a mega-deal with Odell, satisfying the wideout's bespoke demands?

Gettleman hinted at his thinking behind both impending decisions at Senior Bowl practice on Wednesday.

"I had an opportunity to watch [Manning's film] because the quarterback is the most important position on the team," Gettleman told reporters, per the team's website. "At the end of the day, it wasn't a mirage. It was not a mirage."

The GM was referring to the Giants' late-season loss to the NFC champion Eagles in which Manning threw for 434 yards, the fourth-highest total of his career.

With the second overall pick in the draft, the Giants are expected by many to draft their QB of the future, likely choosing between Sam Darnold and Josh Rosen to inherit the throne from the 37-year-old Manning. Gettleman, however, cares not for outside prognostications.

"With the second pick, we're going to take the best player available," Gettleman said, adding, "If you take a guy just to take a guy especially at the quarterback position -- and he fails -- you set yourself back five years.

"There are teams in what I call quarterback hell. They got a quality defense, good special teams and they're going 7-9, 8-8, 9-7. ... Now if there is a legitimate [quarterback in the draft], they got to trade up [and] give away the farm to get the guy."

Gettleman also had high praise for Beckham, who is earning over $8 million this season, the last year of his rookie deal.

"I had a chat with Odell. I had a great chat with him," Gettleman divulged. "People are going to call me crazy, but in that [2014] draft the only guy I would have taken over Kelvin Benjamin, who [the Panthers] took, the only guy I would have taken over him was Odell. That's it. ... The bottom line is he's a wonderfully talented player and I'm looking forward to working with him."

Gettleman's honeymoon period is treating all parties well; everyone is saying the right things and behaving with deference. Will the Giants and their general manager be so happy-go-lucky come draft time?

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