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Sports Business

Manning vs. Manning

February 4, 2008
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The day after the New York Giants’ improbable Super Bowl XLII triumph, sports marketers are already lining up to talk with the game’s MVP, Eli Manning. And there’s speculation that Manning’s sudden success will have a profound effect on older brother, Peyton, who was MVP of last year’s Super Bowl.

Until now, Eli lived in Peyton’s shadow and scored far fewer endorsements than his brother. Sports marketers say that will no longer be the case. There seems to be three schools of thought. The first being that Eli’s success will be good for Peyton, as the two have been paired in ad campaigns before, and now that they have become the first brothers to win back-to-back Super Bowl MVPs, they will be even more in demand as a duo.

But there’s a second school of thought that says Eli--who will be featured in a parade in Manhattan this week--will soon eclipse Peyton in endorsements because he plays in a media market much, much bigger than Peyton does in Indianapolis. Eli’s fourth quarter Super Bowl pass to Giants wide receiver David Tyree certainly won’t hurt. It was a game-saving moment that likely will be the most replayed NFL highlight for the next year. Some marketers even suggest advertisers will seek out Eli instead of Peyton, hurting the Colts QB’s marketability.

Still, some sports marketers think Eli will never eclipse Peyton due to Eli’s awkward on-camera demeanor and the fact he doesn’t possess Peyton’s sense of humor.

Eclipsing Peyton in endorsements will be as tough for Eli as slaying the New England Patriots. Peyton is the NFL’s highest paid pitch man by a wide margin. His deals with ESPN, Sprint, DirecTV, MasterCard, Reebok, Gatorade, Oreo cookies and others net him $13 million annually. Eli counts only ESPN and Oreo cookies has his primary endorsement deals.

So what do you think? Who’s more marketable, Peyton or Eli?
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