Friday afternoon, Eli Manning walked away from the NFL after 16 years. He retired with the team that landed him in a draft-day trade back in 2004, and he left the franchise with two Lombardi Trophies in return. Manning also turned heads by bringing his family up on stage for a photo opportunity.
It was at this moment that many were introduced to one of New York's biggest power couples. They were either not aware that Manning was married or didn't have any frame of reference for his wife, Abby McGrew. That changed on Friday when they saw Manning and McGrew together up on the stage.
The celebrity couple turned many heads following the press conference, but that was not the first time. Manning and McGrew have known each other since the early 2000s when they were both attending the University of Mississippi.
The two prominent figures have been together in the years since college, reuniting in New York, getting married in 2008, and bringing children into the world. They have both grown as people, which is proven by the various photos of them together.
Back in 2006, Manning and McGrew were not yet married. They were dating while navigating a new life together in New York. Manning was only in his third year with the New York Giants while in the midst of his ironman streak as a starter.
One of the events that they both attended was the Judith Ripka & Eli Manning Holiday Shopping Night. This was a yearly event, and both Manning and McGrew were on hand for future iterations.
Every offseason, athletes from the biggest sports come together for the ESPYs. The award ceremony rewards those that defined the previous year in sports, whether they took part in the Super Bowl, the World Cup, the National Championship, or any other big event. Manning and McGrew were on hand for this ceremony back in 2008.
The Giants were nominated for multiple awards at this prestigious event, including the Upset of the Year. The team walked away with this award after defeating the Patriots in Super Bowl XLII. Manning also won Play of the Year after partnering with wide receiver David Tyree for an improbable helmet catch to keep a game-winning drive alive.
Being a power couple in the New York area means that there are events that must be attended. Manning and McGrew are both fairly low-key, but they have still spent time out on the town. One event even resulted in them taking a photo with musician Wyclef Jean.
As the parents of four children, Manning and McGrew likely won't be spotted out at a bar on Wednesday night, but they will occasionally be on hand for important events.
Eli Manning Marries College Sweetheart in Mexico. pic.twitter.com/zEUjdPT— DressMePretty (@DressMePrettyNZ) August 16, 2011
Manning and the New York Giants capped off the 2007 season by defeating the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII. This prevented Tom Brady and compnay from achieving a perfect season and helped Manning secure Super Bowl MVP honors. However, the bigger event took place months later.
Following the Super Bowl victory, Manning and McGrew headed to Mexico for a fairly private ceremony. Roughly 60 people were in attendance as the couple tied the knot.
When Manning and McGrew headed to Mexico for a private wedding, fans of the celebrity couple wanted to see the decorations and the other ways in which this day was made special. The ceremony was fairly private, which took away the inside look, but there were some photographers that took some candid snaps.
One such photo showed the happy couple amid their preparations for the big day. There was a special dinner to kick off the festivities, and it properly set the tone for the big wedding.
Manning and McGrew have grown together as a married couple since tying the knot in 2008. In this time, they have welcomed four children, three of whom are daughters. They also made a difference in both the New York area and in Mississippi.
For many football fans, the most heartwarming family moment came on Friday when the Manning family stepped onto the dais for the final photo session of the QBs playing career. Getting to see the entire family was special for fans of the Giants and celebrity couple.
Throughout Manning's career with the New York Giants, he and McGrew were on a mission to improve the lives of those in need. They helped get a $10 million project off the ground, creating the "Eli & Abby Manning Birthing Center" at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Greenwich Village, Manhattan.
This was not the only charitable pursuit of Manning and McGrew. They also donated another significant sum of money to the Mississippi Children's Hospital. Both Manning and McGrew attended Ole Miss and have ties to the area.
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