The original lawsuit was filed in 2014 and alleged that Manning and the Giants attempted to sell unused apparel and equipment as game-used, autographed memorabilia. Instead of just using genuinely game-worn apparel, they allegedly thought it made more sense to get a dry cleaner to simulate the wear-and-tear. Manning is specifically named in the case because he allegedly decided he wanted to keep certain items for himself instead of letting the team sell or auction them off for diehard fans to purchase. He also guaranteed to memorabilia dealer Steiner Sports that the equipment he was supplying to them was legitimate, even going as far to sign one of the fugazi helmets "game used."
Memorabilia dealer Eric Inselberg reportedly filed the lawsuit after he was indicted for selling fakes he claimed were obtained through the Giants organization. Among the equipment he claims was fabricated is the helmet Manning wore in the Giants' Super Bowl XLII victory and another helmet allegedly worn by him during his rookie season. One of the reportedly fabricated helmets even made its way to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.
Fake memorabilia is a definite no-no in the world of sports, especially considering fans will pay thousands of dollars with the assumption they are getting a piece of history worn by their favorite players, not something tossed around by a local dry cleaner to mimic the real deal.
Manning and the Giants are trying to turn over a new leaf after coming off of an abysmal 2017-2018 regular season campaign and surely the last thing they want to deal with is a trial alleging they have been ripping off loyal fans for years. The trial is scheduled to begin on May 14.