Trial on tap in Giants, Eli Manning memorabilia lawsuit

Trial on tap in Giants, Eli Manning memorabilia lawsuit

Jury selection began on Monday with 14 lawyers representing all parties gathering at the Bergen County Justice Center in New Jersey.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs, the Giants and Manning didn't return messages seeking comment Sunday night.

In a court filing last week, Inselberg's attorneys wrote they would introduce evidence during the trial that would "show that Manning engaged in a pattern of knowingly providing items to Steiner Sports that he misrepresented as having been game-used when he knew they were not".

The plaintiffs used photo experts to determine that the helmets were never used in a game, however, Manning's team claimed that the tactic used by the photo experts known as "photo matching" is unreliable.

In the case, collectors say they paid thousands of dollars for helmets that were altered to appear as if they were worn in National Football League games - including one supposedly worn by Manning in the 2008 Super Bowl.

Manning and the Giants had denied the allegations and characterized the suit as "inflammatory and baseless" in court filings.

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Both Manning and Giants owner John Mara were deposed in the case.

The trial's jury selection began this week, but the death of one attorney's family member had delayed it to be pushed back to next week, prior to Smith's report. The suit claimed two helmets purchased by Inselberg and the two other plaintiffs - including one purportedly used by Manning during the Giants' 2007 Super Bowl season - were bogus.

Quarterback Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants walks off the field after throwing an interception against the Los Angeles Rams at MetLife Stadium on November 5, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

Eric Inselberg and two other plaintiffs say they bought two helmets from Steiner Sports, which has a contract with Manning to provide game-used jerseys and helmets for sale.

According to the lawsuit, Manning had texted a team equipment manger that the helmets in question could "pass as game used".

Manning and his lawyers said Inselberg is a long-time scam artist who sold fake memorabilia for years. The email was meant to ask Skiba for two helmets that would "satisfy the requirement for being game used", the filing said.

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