Giants co-owner John Mara's deposition in the Eli Manning memorabilia fraud case could show that the team turned a blind eye to the situation back in 2008.
The lawyer of Eric Inselberg -- the memorabilia dealer who is suing the Giants and Steiner Sports -- asked Mara what he did after seeing an email from equipment manager Joe Skiba about the game-used helmets. Mara claimed he didn't recall if he spoke with Skiba in-person about it. Mara also didn't go to Manning about it as well.
Inselberg's lawyer then says it is "willful blindness" for the Giants to neglect investigating the situation.
Back in April, the lawyers of Manning provided emails between the quarterback and Skiba that suggest there was no plan to fabricate game-used memorabilia, according to Darren Rovell and Jordan Raanan of ESPN.
"Did you put my helmet somewhere?" Manning wrote in a 2012 email sent from his phone to Skiba shortly after Super Bowl XLVI. "It was not in my locker. If you could hold on to it and my spare one as well, that would be great."
One of the plaintiffs in the fraud lawsuit against Manning purchased what was said to be Manning's backup helmet from Super Bowl XLVI in 2012 from Steiner Sports. The other two plaintiffs in the lawsuit bought a helmet on the secondary market that they were told were worn during a game in the 2007-2008 season.
These two items are what led to the filing of the lawsuit against the Giants, their quarterback, and Steiner Sports.
The emails provided by Manning's lawers also contain communication between the quarterback and Skiba to secure his game-worn memorabilia in both 2011 and 2013.
These emails were produced in court after the plaintiffs filed a motion to the court that incldued an email exchange from 2010 between Manning and Skiba. In this exchange, Manning asks Skiba if he could provide two helmets that could "pass as game-used" in order to satisfy his contract with Steiner Sports.
Manning has adamently denied these claims against him.
The quarterback's lawers say the plaintiffs have no evidence of what was produced after the email exchange in 2010, and have no actual, direct knowledge of Manning providing any fake memorabilia.
"The Manning defendants produced all of their documents concerning Mr. Manning's equipment that he provided to Steiner Sports for the simple reason that they have nothing to hide and vehemently deny that they ever provided Steiner Sports with equipment they did not believe was game-used," wrote the attorneys.