Eli Manning Closes With a Flourish. Will There Be an Encore?


EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — If this was Eli Manning’s final start at home in an N.F.L. career in which he won two Super Bowls with the Giants, it was one that sent chills down the spine and led to a choked-back tear for the face of the franchise for the past 16 years.

Manning, a two-time Super Bowl most valuable player, threw two touchdowns on Sunday afternoon, and the Giants snapped a franchise-record-tying nine-game losing streak with a 36-20 victory over the Miami Dolphins.

This game was all about Manning, 38, who is in the final year of his contract. He got a standing ovation from fans before the opening offensive series and another one when Coach Pat Shurmur pulled him with less than two minutes remaining to put in the backup quarterback Alex Tanney with the outcome decided.

Manning was hugged by teammates, serenaded with chants of “Eli Manning” by fans and met by his family upon entering the tunnel after walking off the field for more hugs and pictures. He picked up his children and hugged them.

Miami quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, whose game slipped after taking a big hit on a third-quarter scramble, threw two touchdowns to DeVante Parker, the second one with the game out of reach.

Buck Allen added a late 1-yard touchdown run in the Giants’ biggest offensive output of the season.

This was a game between teams whose records are among the league’s worst, and Manning’s start gave it some meaning.

He stole the show in the second half, leading the Giants to three touchdowns on their first five possessions. His pass to Slayton wiped out a 10-7 deficit, and Barkley, who had not run for 100 yards in the previous seven games, added touchdown runs of 1 and 10 yards.

Fitzpatrick, who was 6 of 16 in the second half for 78 yards, said the Dolphins could get nothing going.

“This game is so much fun, but it’s difficult, too,” Fitzpatrick said. “Today was a tough day. When guys come to the N.F.L., what they learn is that it’s a very humbling game. Once you think you’ve got it, you get knocked down. It doesn’t matter how many wins you have, or how many wins the opponent has, you’ve got to come out and play every game, and we didn’t show up in the second half today.”

The Dolphins took a 10-7 halftime lead on a 20-yard touchdown pass from Fitzpatrick to Parker and a 24-yard field goal by Sanders.

Manning and Tate combined on a 51-yard catch and run to tie the game, 7-7, just 62 seconds after the Parker catch.



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