ESPN’s ‘First Take’ already talking about Arch Manning’s legacy

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Arch Manning is the talk of the town, even if its way too early.

The 16-year-old high school quarterback — and nephew of NFL QB legends Peyton and Eli Manning — was a debate topic on ESPN’s “First Take” on Tuesday, following a viral video of him throwing a swanky 50-yard touchdown pass.

“Will Arch Manning surpass Peyton, Eli and [grandfather] Archie to become the greatest Manning yet?” was a teaser topic halfway through the show — despite talk about the 6-foot-4, 200-pound teenager’s legacy being a bit premature.

“He’d have to have the talent of grandpa. He’d have to have the excellence of Peyton and the clutch ability of Eli,” co-host Max Kellerman said. “Peyton Manning was like the most excellent player who ever lived until it mattered most, and then Eli was the best, right? He may have all of that in him. He doesn’t have to be the best at each category, just mix it all up there.”

Molly Qerim Rose added, “And just beat [six-time Super Bowl-winning QB] Tom Brady.”

Stephen A. Smith, meanwhile didn’t chime in.

Arch, the son of TV personality and “Soup with Coop” podcast host Cooper Manning, gained momentum online after his recent visit to Clemson.

Newman High School quarterback Arch Manning (16) drops back to pass
Arch Manning is still weighing his college options.
AP Photo

The rising junior at Isidore Newman School in Louisiana was considered a five-star recruit in the 2023 class well before he threw the now-viral 50-yard dime in front of Tigers head coach Dabo Swinney and his staff — and caught the attention of football fans everywhere.

Uncle Eli saw the killer pass and tweeted, “I taught him that.”

The quarterback prodigy’s recruitment is “wide open,” he told The Athletic — though Ole Miss, where Eli and Archie played football, may not be an option for Arch.

Among the schools that are in the mix to land the third generation of Manning QBs are reportedly Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, LSU, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Stanford, Texas and Virginia.

“I’m the one going to college, not my parents and not my coaches. No one’s pressuring me to do anything,” Arch said. “I mean, I don’t even have to play football in college if I don’t want to. But I want to go play at a good school, and I think every college has something great to offer. I’m not singling out anywhere.”

Arch also attends the Manning Passing Academy, located on the campus of Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana.



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