The Giants announced Tuesday that the two-time Super Bowl MVP was being benched for the first time in more than 13 years so they could evaluate the other quarterbacks on the roster over the final month of a lost-and-injury-filled season.
The decision to sit the 36-year-old Manning was totally unexpected, especially with five games left in the regular season.
It was clear the decision hurt and annoyed Manning, who has been the face of the Giants (2-9) since they made a bold draft day trade with the-then San Diego Chargers in 2004 to swap first-round picks and get the No. 1 overall selection to the Meadowlands.
Manning expressed his unhappiness but once again he played the good soldier, voicing his support for veteran Geno Smith, who will start against Oakland on Sunday.
Coach Ben McAdoo gave Manning the option of starting to keep his streak of 210 consecutive starts alive, but he didn't want any part of that.
"You start knowing you are going to come out of the game to keep a streak alive, maybe, that's not what it is about," Manning said.
Manning's streak is the second-longest streak by a quarterback in NFL history, behind Brett Favre's 297.