So much for the All-American football hero

20140130-163946.jpg The NY Post has a story today headlined “Eli, Giants ran fake ‘game worn’ gear scam: lawsuit.
It involves a charge that the squeaky clean quarterback and key personnel in the NY Giants organization colluded to sell jerseys and helmets supposedly worn by him to unsuspecting memorabilia collectors.
Granted the suit was launched by a guy who carries a grudge against the team already, and it was printed in Rupert Murdoch’s rag, but the evidence seems pretty convincing. Collectors began complaining that the items didn’t have the same marks ( scuffs? Dirt streaks?) as were visible in pictures taken during the games in which they were supposedly worn. And then there’s an incriminating email trail where the team’s equipment manager openly discusses the fake gear. Not good.
According to the suit, Manning went along with the ruse because he wanted to keep the original items for himself.
It will be interesting to watch this play out, but the bigger question is, how widespread is this? Memorabilia collecting is a huge industry, so it wouldn’t surprise me to learn of other teams and players doing much the same thing.
Grab the popcorn.

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