Daily News from New York, New York on February 5, 2008 · 85
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Daily News from New York, New York · 85

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New York, New York
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Tuesday, February 5, 2008
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85
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.mil j- ii BY PETE DONOHUE DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER relive the . glory! Our slideshow captures the Giant party on the field ELI MANNING GUIDED the Giants on a stunning last-minute championship drive in the Super Bowl and will lead his team on one more impressive march today through Manhattan's Canyon of Heroes. Eli s days in his famous big brother's shadow on and off the field are over. The Giants quarterback earned $6.5 million for his play and another $5 mil lion in endorsements this 'season. And that was before the 27-year-old led his team on an improbable march through the playoffs, pulling off one impressive upset after another. The string of victories and his in spiring play m the most-watched Super Bowl of all time has dramatically elevated Manning's name recog nition and earning potential, experts said. The proof of his enhanced cachet came just moments after he engineered a victory drive worthy of Joe Montana. Amid the joyous chaos, Manning smiled into a camera and recorded two TV commercials. "I'm going to Disney land!" the Super Bowl MVP proclaimed in a spot for West Coast audiences. "I'm going to. Disney World!" he grinned in the second ad. "Anytime a quarterback or player excels in a game of this magnitude, their marketability is going to increase," said Steven Weinreb, managing director of Steiner Sports. "Eli is already an established name in the New York market. Now, he's a household name across America." Before the playoffs, critics cited Manning's polite and soft-spoken demeanor as proof he didn't have the leadership qualities to lead a team to a Super Bowl win. Now those same personality traits will make him more appealing to advertisers, experts said. "He has a clean image," said Steven Levitt, president of Long Island-based Marketing Evaluations. Levitt christened Manning as an "All-American hero." Manning's list of endorsements had been growing before the super ending to Sunday's championship game. He has been the pitchman for Citizen Watch Co., Toyota of New Jersey, Reebok and ESPN Radio. He and his older brother Indianapolis Colts QB Peyton Manning, the MVP of last year's Super Bowl, also shared the small screen in an Oreo commercial. The spot saw them quitting football to join the DSRL Double Stuf Racing League where they race to lick the icing out of double-stuff cookies. Peyton, who's much more outgoing than Eli, was ranked by Sports Illustrated as the 12th highest-paid athlete in the nation last year with $13 million in endorsements. Peyton has been a pitchman for MasterCard, DirectTV, Sprint, Gatorade, Reebok and Microsoft's Xbox. New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady pulled in about $9 million in endorsements, according to Sports Illustrated. Eli didn't even get an honorable mention on the list. . Those days over. . Eli may not catch Peyton just yet, but the Super Bowl win will mean millions of dollars in additional income for the younger Manning. "Throughout the game, he demonstrated tremendous poise, and the ability to lead," David Carter, a marketing consultant with the Sports Business Group in Los Angeles. "He really helped to memorialize to advertisers and sports fans that the Manning family is sports royalty. He helped elevate the Manning brand." Most importantly, he became "viable not just as Peyton's little brother but a guy who succeeded on his own on the biggest stage in sports," Carter said. Manning is entering his prime, and if he keeps winning, his endorsement money will keep rising, "If you can win over time that's when you really begin to build up that cachet and dominate in that endorsement space," Carter said. There doesn't appear to be any sib ling rivalry between the Mannings. Peyton watched the Super Bowl from a luxury box and was shown re peatedly during the broadcast pump ing his fist in celebration when the Giants made key plays. It's not unimaginable that next year the Manning brothers could find themselves back in the Super Bowl, competing against one another on the field for the championship and vying for the right to proclaim: "I'm going to Disney World!" pdonohuenydailynews.com an i I " i cimmpions ? come hogs Ol JO "D Mann of hour has gone from critics' whipping boy to Super hero -and it all ads up to big bucks z CL cr (o) (7&(7 A I ' 7 4 s - i ' - ' 1: I k -"t::v- i - o O 00

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