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Eli Manning has not started his career better than Peyton

Eli Manning has been playing well. Great for him, I root for him and him stepping up his play prevented the 19-0 apocalypse and gave us the gift of 18-1. Unfortunately whenever a guy is doing well the media starts with the hyperbole. TMQ made the claim that Eli has been better through the corresponding part Peyton's career. There is a problem with this.

You have to compare the Mannings apples to apples. Peyton started from day one of his rookie year. Eli didn't start until week 11. Here are their passing stats from season 2 through 4 games into season 5.

Peyton 1118-1789 62.5% 13,675 93 57
Eli          976-1740 56.1% 11,374 77 56

yards per attempt      Peyton 7.64 to Eli 6.54
yards per completion Peyton 12.2 to Eli 11.7
INT%                         Peyton 5.1% to Eli 5.7%

Peyton was significantly better in every category. Peyton had an awful start to his career. Peyton threw 18 picks and completed over 60% of his passes once in the first 9 games, Eli rode the bench through that stage of his career.

Apples to apples, Eli learned on the bench while Peyton was thrown to the wolves. If you want to compare their careers you have to do it over points of their careers where they both actually played.

(tip to DZ and FO for linking the TMQ piece)