REPORT: Eli Manning’s Emails Show He Was At The Center of Fake Helmet Scheme
Back in 2014, QB Eli Manning and the New York Giants were sued by three memorabilia collectors over allegations they purposely sold fraudulent memorabilia considered to be “game worn” by the players and team.
Manning sent an email asking the team’s equipment manager for “helmets that can pass as game used,” according to blockbuster court papers obtained by The Post.
“Manning’s email is contained in a pair of exchanges that allegedly began when his marketing agent, Alan Zucker, asked Manning to supply “2 game used helmets and 2 game used jerseys” as per the two-time Super Bowl MVP’s contract with memorabilia dealer Steiner Sports.
Several hours after Zucker sent the request on April 27, 2010, Giants equipment manager Joe Skiba sent Manning an email saying: “Let me know what your looking for I’ll try to get something down for you…,” court papers say.
“2 helmets that can pass as game used. That is it. Eli,” Manning allegedly responded from his BlackBerry at 2:08 p.m.
At 2:25 p.m., Manning wrote back to Zucker, saying: “Should be able to get them for tomorrow.”
“Thanks Eli,” Zucker responded.
In related court papers, plaintiffs’ lawyer Brian Brook alleges that the emails prove “Manning was looking to give non-game-used helmets to Steiner to satisfy — fraudulently — his contractual obligation.”
“Since it appears that the Giants failed to preserve any emails between Manning and Joe Skiba, and the Giants are keeping Skiba on the payroll and paying his substantial legal bills, the above email exchange may be the only direct evidence that Manning knowingly gave fraudulent helmets to Steiner for sale to fans,” Brook added.
“The first we have since Eric saved it on his AOL account and the second we have since Eli apparently saved it on his AOL account,” Brook said.
“I do give Eli and his lawyers credit for not destroying evidence.”
In a statement, lawyers for the Giants said: “The email, taken out of context, was shared with the media by an unscrupulous memorabilia dealer and his counsel who for years has been seeking to leverage a big payday.”
“The email predates any litigation, and there was no legal obligation to store it on the Giants server,” the statement added.
“Eli Manning is well known for his integrity and this is just the latest misguided attempt to defame his character.”
Stay tuned, this story is still developing.