Patriots: Say No To Johnny Football

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Johnny Manziel anxiously sat inside the Best Buy Theater in New York alongside Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o and Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein.  These three men were awaiting the announcement of who would become the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner.  Manziel, who drew 474 first-place votes, won the Heisman Trophy.  The Texas A&M quarterback was the second player from the school to win the award; John David Crow won the honors back in 1957.


Photo courtesy of si.com
Manziel has had hype around him his whole life.  He had College Station buzzing ever since he was a red-shirted freshman.  He later earned the nickname "Johnny Football" during his sophomore year with the Aggies.  The future was bright for Manziel.  The six foot tall signal caller was primed to make a run in the NFL.

Leading up to the 2014 draft, the Cleveland Browns needed a quarterback.  The Browns selected defensive back Justin Gilbert out of Oklahoma State with the 7th overall pick.  Cleveland wasn't done, though.  Like a scene out of the movie Draft Day, the Browns GM channeled his inner Kevin Costner and swung a deal to acquire the 22nd overall pick in the first round.  Roger Goodell would go to the podium and announce that the Browns had selected Johnny Manziel with the pick.



Before his first offseason workout, Manziel would enter rehab for an undisclosed reason.  He was released in time for workouts with the team.  That first season, Manziel played in five games, throwing two interceptions.  In his second season, he played better, throwing for 1,500 yards and seven touchdowns, with five interceptions.  During that second season, Manziel would spiral back out of control.  He would begin to party more, resulting in the Browns questioning his commitment.  Roughly 22 months after the Browns traded for the 22nd pick and drafted Manziel, he was released.  Johnny Football was Johnny Jobless.
Manziel's publicist released a statement for the quarterback:

"I'd like to thank the Cleveland Browns for the opportunity they gave me - nearly two years ago, we all hoped that we were building what could be a championship team for Cleveland.  I will always remember the support I received from the organization, my teammates and especially the fans." 
Then, just like that, it was over.
Manziel's two seasons with the Browns resulted in false promise from a player so talented.  The City of Cleveland has not seen a football championship in over 50 years.  The city had hoped Manziel was the one to help lead them to the Lombardi Trophy.  Instead lies, rehab, and domestic violence captured the headlines.

Shop for official New England Patriots fan gear and authentic collectibles at NFLShop.comManziel's off-field antics left the talented quarterback wondering what's next?  For Manziel, being released from the Browns was the least of his problems.  Manziel would begin to deal with an assault charge from then girlfriend Colleen Crowley.  She claimed that Manziel hit her so hard that her eardrum ruptured.  Then, Manziel's agent Erik Burkhart dropped him.  Manziel had no football, girlfriend, or agent.  His life was clearly spiraling out of control and fast.  According to the Dallas Morning News, Manziel's father feared for the worst.  Paul Manziel was quoted "I truly believe if they can't get him help, he won't live to see his 24th birthday."
Manziel took some time away from football.  He would utilize this time to get his life on track and then make another run at the NFL.  Manziel announced the start of his latest endeavor, ComebackSZN.  Manziel also announced on Twitter that ComebackSZN was for anyone who was in a similar situation as him that you can overcome that.  On his Twitter page, he would go on to say "Staring the adversity dead in the face admitting your wrongs and pressing forward with a vengeance."

Manziel would take his ComebackSZN to the CFL where he would sign with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.  He would never appear in a game with them and was traded in 2018 to the Montreal Alouettes.  In eight games with the Alouettes, Manziel threw for 1,290 yards with five TDs and seven INTs.  He would later be released in 2019 for a league rule violation.


Manziel Not Worth The Time or Hassle

Does ComebackSZN lead Johnny Football to Foxboro?  Manziel to the New England Patriots could be an option.  Manziel from a financial perspective would not cost the Patriots much in salary compensation.  Coming to the Patriots, Manziel would not have to worry about being the starter, that currently still belongs to the GOAT, Tom Brady.  The conversation of Manziel signing with the Patriots is something you'd see on your television screens watching ESPN's First Take.  Steven A. Smith and Max Kellerman breaking down why Manziel is a great fit for the Patriots.  NBC Sports Boston's Tom E. Curran on his "Quick Slants The Podcast" believes the Patriots will sign Manziel if Robert Kraft signs off on it.

It's no secret the Patriots need to find Brady's successor.  The Patriots currently have Brian Hoyer and Danny Etling on the roster as back-up options for Brady.  Manziel to New England would create a media circus - remember when Tim Tebow was in training camp?  Manziel's track record from his time with the Browns and the CFL does not lead me to believe the Patriots and Coach Bill Belichick should entertain signing him.  The Patriots are better suited in drafting Brady's successor with one of their picks in this year's draft. 

In life, everyone deserves a second chance.  So does Manziel, but not with the Patriots.  From SpyGate, to Aaron Hernandez, to Deflategate, and now to Robert Kraft's prostitution mess, it'd be wise to not to add ComebackSZN as a chapter to that growing book of controversy.


Follow Chris on Twitter @Chirs Henrique, and Boston Sports Syndicate @BostonSportsSyn.

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Boston Sports Syndicate: Patriots: Say No To Johnny Football
Patriots: Say No To Johnny Football
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