The man who brought Eli Manning to New York indicated Tuesday he'd prefer to see the quarterback retire with the Giants.
Talking to WFAN's Maggie Gray and Marc Malusis, former Giants general manager Ernie Accorsi recalled working for the Baltimore Colts when Johnny Unitas was traded to the San Diego Chargers in 1973.
"It broke my heart to see John Unitas in a San Diego Charger uniform," Accorsi said after being asked about Manning's future.
Manning, who turns 39 next month, will be a free agent after this season, and the Giants have moved on to Daniel Jones. Manning hasn't said publicly what he plans to do, but ESPN reported last week that the two-time Super Bowl MVP will seek a starting job in 2020.
Accorsi, who acquired Manning in a draft day trade with the Chargers in 2004 for Philip Rivers, said he doesn't know what Manning's plans are, but the former GM indicated he wouldn't be surprised if the quarterback was at least tempted to continue his career.
Accorsi said the notion that an offensive-minded coach must be hired to groom a young QB is off-base.
"First of all, (John) Madden was a defensive coach," he said. "(Chuck) Noll was a defensive coach. Parcells, Belichick. There were just as many defensive coaches who've been successful with young quarterbacks as offensive coaches. I mean, you have to know offense because you're defending offense. Secondly, these guys are football coaches, and they know how to handle the quarterback. The most important element is leadership and feel and the ability to gain the confidence of your players."
To listen to the interview with Accorsi, click on the audio player above.