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Eli Manning v. Tom Brady: A Head-to-Head Analysis

After exciting wins last night, it looks like Super Bowl XLVI will be a revisiting of the 2008 Giants-Patriots match-up. While many news outlets are analyzing the teams' stats and odds, we here at PAPERMAG decided to take a different approach and analyze the two franchises' leading men, Eli Manning and Tom Brady. However subjective it may be, we're weighing in on their tastes, interests and photos (based on interviews and articles about the gents) and predicting if not who will win the Super Bowl then at least who will win this head-to-head. Feel free to chime in with your opinions in the comments section below and let us know if you agree or disagree with our assessments.

Tom Brady v. Eli Manning.png

Favorite TV Show:

Seinfeld v Dexter.png
Manning: Seinfeld

Brady: Dexter

Advantage: Manning. While these are both admirable selections, we gotta hand it to the kid from NOLA to go with a classic about neurotic New Yorkers. Though New York is Manning's adopted city, we can't picture him modeling the behaviors of this Upper West Side foursome, which, in some ways, makes it even better that he likes the show so much. Obviously we wouldn't ever want Brady to imitate Dexter but for a stylish metrosexual, saying your favorite show is Dexter on Showtime is not all that surprising nor against type.

Favorite Music:

Motley Crue v. U2.pngManning: '80s hair bands like Mötley Crüe, Poison, Boston, Skid Row, Warrant

Brady: U2, Jack Johnson, Coldplay and Jay-Z.

Advantage: Brady. Though we're tempted to give this to Manning and his hair metal preferences, Brady gets points for cuteness because his list includes a set of BFF couples: Gwynnie and Chris and Bey and Jay.  Plus, frankly, Jay-Z trumps all of these picks.

Favorite Food

olives v. onion rings.png
Manning: Olives

Brady: Onion rings

Advantage: Brady. Olives are only acceptable in a salad or martini (or picking at a relish plate before Thanksgiving at your grandma's house) but onion rings, on the other hand, are definitely crave-worthy.

Surprising Fact:

Screen shot 2012-01-23 at 1.39.59 PM.pngManning: He enjoys going antiquing with his wife, a hobby he picked up as a young boy walking around Magazine St. in New Orleans with his mother while his older brothers had sports games.

Brady: He's never had a cup of coffee in his life.

Advantage: Manning. It's pretty cute that as a little kid getting constantly dragged to his older brothers' games, Eli opted instead to go poke around antique shops with his mom. And, moreover, that the hobby continued into adulthood. 

"Normal Bodies" Shirtless Shots

Shirtless.pngManning: He's tan, he's smiling sheepishly and he has no six-pack in sight. 

Brady: His famously hunky bod looks pretty "regular guy" in this NFL scouting photo from 2000, which also makes sense given that he had only recently come out of four years of college football plus keg parties at University of Michigan.

Advantage: Tie.  We were originally going to give this one to Manning because he's smiling in the photo but let's face it, even with "Average Joe" pecs, you'd still have dated either one of them in college.

"Fugly Face"

fugly face.pngManning: His scowl is a mix between an intimidation look and soap opera-style "smell the fart" acting.

Brady: If it's even possible to make Brady look fug, we guess this is it. In the blush of "new daddy-hood" it looks like he has the teensiest bit of a double chin in this shot, which compliments the bearishness of the long hair and beard.

Advantage: Manning. This photo is too priceless.

AND THE WINNER IS: MANNING, by a hair, 4-3.  But it's sort of a backhanded compliment given that Manning's scrunched up mug was what sealed the deal in the end. 

And there you have it.  Just remember, if Manning outdoes Brady and the Giants win on February 5th, you read something about it here first!

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