Giants running back Rashad Jennings apologized for portraying quarterback Eli Manning in a negative light after publicly stating that Manning instructed him not to score in New York’s loss to the Cowboys on Sunday.
“First of all, let me say that I want to apologize from my heart for the negative light that I unintentionally cast my quarterback and friend Eli Manning in,” Jennings wrote on Wednesday in a weekly column he writes for the New York Post. “I continue to have the utmost respect for him, and I have complete trust in his leadership. ... I see now how what I said could easily be misunderstood as an expression of resentment.”
In Sunday’s 27–26 loss, Jennings carried the ball twice inside the Cowboys’ five-yard line around the two-minute mark of the fourth quarter, but avoided the end zone because Manning lost track of Dallas’ remaining timeouts. A score would have given the Giants a 10-point lead.
After the game, Jennings said Manning and the coaches told him not to score in an effort to run the clock down. Head coach Tom Coughlin denied that he gave that instruction, and said he thought Manning may have been confused.
Jennings appeared on SI Now on Tuesday and said he would not backtrack from his comments, but that he still placed full confidence in Manning.
On Wednesday, Jennings wrote that he called Manning to apologize after he saw the media’s coverage of his comments, and said that Manning told him there were no hard feelings.
“I hope that those who have come to know me over the years will readily see that this is something that is uncharacteristic of me,” Jennings wrote. “I take full ownership of the fact that I didn’t handle things as I should have. And for that, again, I truly apologize to my quarterback, to my coach, to my team, and to our fans.”
The Giants play the Falcons on Sunday at MetLife Stadium.
- Erin Flynn