Interim New York Giants coach Steve Spagnuolo has confirmed Eli Manning will reclaim the starting quarterback role for Sunday's game against the Dallas Cowboys.
Manning's streak of 210 consecutive starts ended last week when head coach Ben McAdoo instead selected Geno Smith to face the Oakland Raiders, a decision met with much derision around the NFL.
McAdoo was duly fired along with GM Jerry Reese on Monday and, having announced that decision, Giants co-owner John Mara said his understanding was Manning would start against Dallas.
At a news conference, Spagnuolo confirmed that would be the case, stating: "Eli Manning will be the quarterback for this football team in this game.
Spagnuolo continued: "When John Mara and I talked, one of the first things he asked about was the quarterback situation and I said, "John, my gut right now is that Eli should be the starter". I took my gut and visited with the offensive coaches and together with that, Eli Manning is going to be our quarterback.
"I had a conversation with Geno, which was a tremendous conversation. I have a great deal of respect for Geno Smith and the way he reacted. He is a team player."
Spagnuolo, who has stepped up from his role as defensive coordinator, began his news conference by paying tribute to McAdoo.
"It's been a rough 60 hours, since we left Oakland [following Sunday's loss to the Raiders]," said Spagnuolo. "Needless to say, it's been real emotional. Everybody's kind of felt it.
"The first thing I want to convey is how much respect I have for Ben and what he did here as the head football coach. I feel personally one of the guys that let him down - we failed as a team but part of that failure was me so it's really hard for me to stand here in the position I'm in right now.
"I want to publicly thank Ben for two years ago sticking with me as the defensive coordinator here. I greatly appreciated that. He's a great man, he's a great coach. he'll be a head coach again in this league, in my opinion, and a really good one.
"Having said that, I do want to say I'm honoured that the ownership asked me to do this. I will give it every ounce of energy that I have, out of respect for this organisation."
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