New York Giants co-owner John Mara says changes are coming to the team, and he hinted that coach Ben McAdoo's job could be in jeopardy before the season ends.
Pressed further on McAdoo's performance this season, Mara said, "We're 2-9. We're 2-9, OK? I'm embarrassed about that. Nobody's doing a good job."
Mara provided more insight Wednesday on the decision, saying he talked to general manager Jerry Reese "a week or two ago" with the idea of giving Smith and Davis Webb playing time. The original plan was to let Manning, who took scout team reps Wednesday, start games and then "work the other guys in."
"Tuesday morning, Jerry called me and said Eli had informed Ben that if you're going to play Geno in the second half, you may as well just start him," Mara said. "It's not fair to him, it's not fair to me, I think that would be the best decision going forward. He also wanted us to put out a statement announcing it. So that's what we did."
In retrospect, Mara said he understood why Manning wouldn't be on board with being pulled from games. When asked if there was a better way for the Giants to handle the situation, Mara said, "There probably is. But tell me what it is."
"I didn't want him to go out like this," Mara said. "But I understand his feeling, and I respect his decision. He doesn't want the streak to be tarnished by just getting in for a few series."
Mara said it was difficult for him to see Manning get emotional Tuesday while talking about the Giants' decision. He said he had a "very emotional" talk with Manning on Wednesday morning and told him he didn't want to see Manning "go out like this."
"He's obviously not happy with the decision, but he understands it," Mara said. "He's a special player and a special person. When you see him get that emotional, it's tough."
Although Mara told reporters no one "should be writing [Manning's] obituary just yet," he made it clear the Giants want to know exactly what they have at quarterback heading into the offseason.
"I don't know that [playing the other QBs] will give us all the info, but it's better than nothing," Mara said. "Obviously, we'll have a high draft pick and there will be QBs available."