New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning vehemently denied accusations Thursday that he knowingly provided fake game-used memorabilia to collectors, as was suggested in a recent lawsuit.
New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning talks to reporters during an availability ahead of the NFL Football draft, Thursday, April 20, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J.
"I have done nothing wrong", Manning said. I have no reason to do anything of that nature.
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Recently, the CEO of Steiner Sports, Brandon Steiner, had Manning's back, saying that he's "someone I would say I trust my children with". Manning added that he would not be able to discuss specific aspects of the civil case because the lawsuit is still underway. "And I know that when this is all done, everybody will see it the same way". Steiner said that prior to any conclusive findings, anyone who bought one of the dozen or so game-used Manning items from him over the years could get a complete refund now.
He did say an email that was submitted into evidence last week in which he asked equipment manager Joe Skiba for helmets that appear to be game-used was taken out of context and hinted that other emails from that conversation will show it as such. "That is it. Eli", Manning wrote to Skiba, according to the documents. "I think my track record of how I handled myself since I've been here in NY since 2004 speaks for itself. I've tried to do everything with class and be a stand-up citizen and that's what I have done, and that's being attacked right now".
"A lot of times, we're not in the locker room, and there are a lot of leagues and teams that don't have authentication programs that really secure product", he said. He said has never personally sold or made any money off a jersey or helmet sale.