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Official Johnny Manziel Thread - participates in Fan Controlled Football: 'Feels like I'm super washed up'


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RIP

His argument is pretty ridiculous, but there's really no reason to bring up Ferguson or the I can't breathe protests in response. Pretty poor taste here guys.

Wow. I think we can all agree FSU models are smoking hot.

In my travels and experience the 2 hottest campus co-eds in the country are UGA, FSU with Auburn and Alabama a close 3rd and 4rth. The talent on those campuses is mindblowing.

Full disclosure: I have never been to USC's or ASU's campus but I hear they are top notch as well.

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Draft factoid: Manziel and QBR

April, 19, 2014

Apr 19
10:00 AM ET
By Pat McManamon | ESPN.com
... Johnny Manziel led college FBS quarterbacks in Total Quarterback Rating in 2012 and finished third in 2013. The significance? Every player who led the nation from 2008 through 2011 is an NFL starter, including Andrew Luck in Indianapolis and Russell Wilson in Seattle. Wilson also has that ever-elusive ring.
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Wow. I think we can all agree FSU models are smoking hot.

In my travels and experience the 2 hottest campus co-eds in the country are UGA, FSU with Auburn and Alabama a close 3rd and 4rth. The talent on those campuses is mindblowing.

Full disclosure: I have never been to USC's or ASU's campus but I hear they are top notch as well.

But damn that is perfect.

http://www.laurenvictoriahanley.com/

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Draft factoid: Manziel and QBR

April, 19, 2014

Apr 19
10:00 AM ET
By Pat McManamon | ESPN.com
... Johnny Manziel led college FBS quarterbacks in Total Quarterback Rating in 2012 and finished third in 2013. The significance? Every player who led the nation from 2008 through 2011 is an NFL starter, including Andrew Luck in Indianapolis and Russell Wilson in Seattle. Wilson also has that ever-elusive ring.

I wonder why they cut if off at 2008? It's a rhetorical question. The 2007 leader in total QBR was Tim Tebow.

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Draft factoid: Manziel and QBR

April, 19, 2014

Apr 19

10:00 AM ET

By Pat McManamon | ESPN.com

... Johnny Manziel led college FBS quarterbacks in Total Quarterback Rating in 2012 and finished third in 2013. The significance? Every player who led the nation from 2008 through 2011 is an NFL starter, including Andrew Luck in Indianapolis and Russell Wilson in Seattle. Wilson also has that ever-elusive ring.

I wonder why they cut if off at 2008? It's a rhetorical question. The 2007 leader in total QBR was Tim Tebow.

Well it is hard to top 3 for 4 for 56 yards and 1 TD.

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Draft factoid: Manziel and QBR

April, 19, 2014

Apr 19
10:00 AM ET
By Pat McManamon | ESPN.com
... Johnny Manziel led college FBS quarterbacks in Total Quarterback Rating in 2012 and finished third in 2013. The significance? Every player who led the nation from 2008 through 2011 is an NFL starter, including Andrew Luck in Indianapolis and Russell Wilson in Seattle. Wilson also has that ever-elusive ring.

I wonder why they cut if off at 2008? It's a rhetorical question. The 2007 leader in total QBR was Tim Tebow.

That is a hilarious stat.

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The SI 64, No. 13: QB Johnny Manziel

Doug Farrar

Excerpt:

Bio: Johnny Manziel has produced more noise, both positive and negative, than any collegiate prospect since Tim Tebow flew out of Florida in 2010. The point at which it all got away from him may have been when ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski, one of the better-educated and well-respected people in the business, famously said that he wouldn’t take Manziel in the first three rounds of the draft, based on Jaworski’s own preferences for quarterbacks who play within the pocket and within structure. This created its own news cycle, of course, and now that Jaws has seen more Manziel tape, he’s backed off his stance and pushed Johnny Football up his board.

Jon Gruden, another current ESPN analyst who crunches a great deal of tape, had a more positive opinion after sitting down with Manziel for his QB Camp series.

“I had more fun with Manziel than I did most guys,” Gruden told USA Today‘s Jim Corbett. “I’d love to have him. It takes courage to pull the ball down and reverse field and do some of the crazy things that Favre and Manziel do. There’s going to be consequences when sometimes it doesn’t work out. But it takes a tremendous amount of guts and courage to go make a play when there’s nothing there instead of throwing the ball away.”

And that’s Manziel in a nutshell. He will make plays other quarterbacks simply won’t, and will try to make plays no quarterback should, and alternately inspire and frustrate in equal measures. But here’s one thing to be sure: Nobody completes 68.9 percent of his passes for 7,820 yards, 63 touchdowns and 22 interceptions, adding 2,169 rushing yards and 30 rushing touchdowns, without something on the ball. The question is, of course, how will this all transfer to the (cue Jaworski voice): “National. Football. League?”

Strengths: With all the folderol about his on-field escapades and off-field persona, it’s quite possible that Manziel is still wildly underrated as a pure quarterback — but he has all the tools to succeed at any level. First, he’s not a run-around guy. He looks to pass first on designed pass plays, even when he’s flushed out of the pocket. He’s very light on his feet in the pocket, and when he has to run, he’s incredibly good at resetting and driving the ball downfield. Has an unusual feel for throwing accurately out of weird positions, which is both a positive and negative. When he drives the ball, he can make any throw from the deep fade to the skinny post to all manner of short and intermediate timing throws. Has a plus-arm, though it’s not a Howitzer, and he’s learned to put air under the ball to help receivers with their timing. He’s a master at extending plays beyond their logical conclusions and directing receivers along the way. Has an innate sense of how to create holes in pass coverage with motion and redirection, and he’s coming into the NFL at a time when this attribute is far more prized than it used to be.

Manziel isn’t just a scrambler, he’s an outstanding pure runner — when he calls his own number on draws, he gets up to speed quickly, reads gaps patiently and has an extra gear in the open field. He’s very quick to set and throw — once he makes his decision to throw, there’s very little delay or wasted motion. Can make deep, accurate throws across his body, even when on the run. In general, he’s a rare thrower when under duress.

Manziel showed specific and impressive improvements at his pro day, which proved that he’s been working hard in the offseason, and taking what performance coaches George Whitfield and Kevin O’Connell are teaching him very seriously. Clearly has the desire to improve, and seems to have an inherent chip on his shoulder when doubted. Despite all the talk about his personality, Manziel appears to be a born on-field leader who can rally his teammates. With words and actions, he seems to inspire belief.

Weaknesses: Manziel’s greatest strength is absolutely tied to his biggest weakness. His improvisational ability, while as impressive as any I’ve seen in a collegiate quarterback, has allowed him to get away with random and unrepeatable plays that won’t have the same shelf life in the NFL. Part of the problem is that he isn’t consistent with his mechanics — when he drives through the throw with his body, he’s as good a passer as there is in this draft class. But there are other times when he’ll miss wildly because he’s throwing off his back foot or off both feet, which limits how much torque he can generate. And though he can go through multiple reads at times, he’ll have to do that more at the NFL level. Right now, there’s a sandlot quality to his field vision that produces compelling results at times, but isn’t sustainable against more complex concepts. At times, his deeper throws hang in the air, which could lead to more picks in the NFL.

Played almost exclusively in shotgun and pistol formations at A&M, and though he displayed an ease with dropping back when playing under center, the NFL team that takes him as a dropback guy would have to cross its fingers at first. Being away from the center gives him a timing edge at the snap and helps him see the field.

Tends to arch back when he throws longer passes with arc — not necessarily a problem, but it’s unusual. It may be an adaptive strategy to counter the issue related to his height; at just under 6-feet tall, Manziel has to work his game in the same ways everyone from Fran Tarkenton to Drew Brees to Russell Wilson has. There are simply some throws he will not be able to make in the pocket because he can’t see what’s happening until he either creates line splits by running, or waits for them to open up. And at 207 pounds, there will be legitimate concerns about how well and how often he’ll be able to make plays on the run in designed situations. If that part of his play is reduced, that puts the pressure on him to do more as a passer — which he has the potential to do, but he’ll have to change some things about his modus operandi to make that happen.

Conclusion: Separating Johnny Manziel the media creation from Johnny Manziel the quarterback is hard to do at times, and that’s his own fault as much as anyone else’s. But we’ll end the analyst breakdown with what former NFL quarterback (and possible future Hall of Famer) Kurt Warner said about Manziel after Manziel’s pro day, as it seems to wrap his potential up pretty nicely.

“Most guys can make the short throws. Most guys can make the intermediate throws. How do you make those deeper throws? Do you throw them the right way, and that’s the thing that impresses me – he threw the ball the right way. I don’t care if you just get a completion; I want to see it thrown the right way. His deep balls – great touch. Great trajectory. The deep plays he made on the run, and I know how difficult that is to keep your body balanced while you’re running away from someone and being able to put the ball 45 yards downfield … those things don’t happen every day. Twenty of the starting quarterbacks [in the NFL] can’t do those things. He was doing something consistently that not a lot of guys do.”

And that’s why some NFL team will take Manziel in the first part of the first round of the 2014 draft, red flags be damned: His ability to transcend the norm is special and rare and unusual. If he corrals what he has and manages it to a new level, he could well be a spectacular NFL quarterback in the right system. If he doesn’t, he’ll likely be a spectacular flameout. Johnny Manziel’s NFL future could go either way, but one thing’s for sure … it won’t be boring.

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Gruden: Manziel 'has a lot of magic to him,' compares to Favre

By Mike Huguenin

College Football 24/7 writer

Jon Gruden compared Johnny Manziel to Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young in February, and this week, Gruden compared Manziel to future Hall of Famer Brett Favre.

"I'd love to have him" as a coach," Gruden said.

"It takes courage to pull the ball down and reverse field and do some of the crazy things that Favre and Manziel do," said Gruden, who was a Green Bay Packers assistant in 1992-94 and worked with Favre. "There's going to be consequences when sometimes it doesn't work out. But it takes a tremendous amount of guts and courage to go make a play when there's nothing there instead of throwing the ball away."

Gruden also said "Johnny has a lot of magic to him. There's not a more exciting college football player I've seen in the last few years." Gruden lauded Manziel's fortitude: "He's got more guts than most guys have."

Gruden met with and worked out nine quarterbacks this year for his "Gruden's QB Camp" series on ESPN and told USA Today that Manziel stood out.

Manziel left Texas A&M after just two seasons of college football, but Gruden spun that as a potential positive.

"If you get him with a quarterback coach or anybody that aspires to be a quarterback coach and spend the time teaching this kid NFL defenses and your system, I can't imagine Johnny not being successful," Gruden said.

In February, Gruden said the concern over the "Johnny Football" persona was somewhat overblown, and he did tell USA Today that it was an issue.

"Nobody is perfect, but you certainly don't want your quarterback flying around during the week. You don't want to read about your quarterback in the newspaper every day of the week," Gruden said. "I think he's learned a lesson, but he's got to prove that."

Manziel is in play to be the No. 1 pick of the draft, and Gruden said it should be a "big concern" for the Houston Texans if they play the "What-if? Game": What if they bypass Manziel and he turns into a star? But Houston also is considering South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney and UCF quarterback Blake Bortles, and the Texans likely are playing the "What-if? Game" with both of those guys, too, especially with Clowney.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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How do you view Manziel vs Tannehill in terms of physical qualities/stature, athleticism, size, arm strength, etc.?

Tannehill seemed more like a "pro-ready" QB coming out. Also Manziel had Evans, it certainly seemed difficult for me to tell how often it was Manziel digging his team out of trouble or the guy he was throwing to on many of those occasions, Evans.

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Steve Young: Johnny Manziel can be Drew Brees

By Dan Parr

Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young sees rare traits in Johnny Manziel that might eventually make him an NFL superstar, but only if Manziel is willing to work to change his game.

Count Young among those that think all the things that made Manziel great in college won't necessarily work at the next level.

"He's the guy that seems to really thrive in chaos," Young said in an interview with Yahoo! Sports. "That's an innate quality that I don't see very often. I think Johnny is very improvisational. I think that that's a fun part of the game. The truth is that in the NFL, the job is to deliver the ball from the pocket. That's the job. So he's going to have to transition that.

"That'll be the challenge for Johnny -- if he's willing to do the boring work behind the scenes day in and day out, over years, he can be Drew Brees. He can be (like) guys that have moved around in their careers -- Aaron Rodgers. Aaron Rodgers could scramble around for 100 yards if he wanted to, but he's learned the game. That's what Johnny is going to have to do."

So, while Young obviously isn't making any guarantees about how Manziel will fare, he sees the potential for him to be the next Brees (a 6-foot tall QB, just like Manziel), and any team that drafts Manziel would be more than satisfied if he can become anywhere close to that type of player.

Young's old go-to guy, fellow Hall of Famer Jerry Rice, said last month on NFL Network's "Total Access" that he actually thinks of his former 49ers teammate when he watches Manziel and was asked about the comparison during the Yahoo interview.

"Johnny is not the biggest guy, but he has an exceptional heart," Rice said. "Steve was the same way when he first came in, he was more of a running quarterback, but then he wanted to become more of a pocket passer."

Of course, the questions about Manziel extend beyond whether he'll ever settle in and become more of a pocket passer. The concerns about some of his intangibles have helped make him the most polarizing prospect in the draft. And as for opinions of him -- everyone seems to have one, and we're keeping track of them.

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Hall of Fame QB Warren Moon not sold on Johnny Manziel

By Chase Goodbread

College Football 24/7 writer

Johnny Manziel's pro-day performance on March 27 impressed a lot of people, but it hasn't done anything to change Hall of Fame quarterback Warren Moon's opinion: He's just not sold. Moon told SiriusXM NFL Radio that Manziel will have to tone down the risk-taking at the NFL level that he was known for at Texas A&M, not only to minimize mistakes, but to keep himself healthy, as well.

"Well, he's one of the most exciting players to play college football, no question about it. He's a risk taker, and he gets away with a lot of those things," Moon said. "I just think in the NFL, some of those things, he's going to have to take out of his game. He just won't be able to get away with some of those things that he did in college football, especially taking on people, being as physical as he likes to play the game. I don't think you can do that in the NFL or you won't be available for your football team."

That's not the first time Moon has cast doubt about whether Manziel will find success at the pro level. A couple of weeks before Manziel's pro day, Moon expressed some of the same concerns in a radio interview. From an injury standpoint, it's an especially legitimate concern. Getting good value from drafting a quarterback in the first round demands a healthy career, if not a lengthy one.

With four clubs holding a top-five pick in need of a quarterback, Manziel would like nothing more than to prove himself in that regard as one of the first picks off the board. If he slides past Minnesota with the No. 8 pick, however, he could be waiting awhile.

"He's doing all the things right to move himself up in the draft, but still, what makes Johnny Manziel 'Johnny' is those special, magical plays that he makes, and I just don't know if there's going to be as many of those when you're playing against the talent that he's playing against in the NFL," Moon added.

Of course, the NFL is a level of play all its own.

But when Manziel scorched defenses for 1,405 rushing yards during his 2012 Heisman Trophy season as a freshman, taking on defenders and refusing to slide or run out of bounds, fans of the defensively-rugged SEC were howling that he'd never last the season in that league, either.

And he came through it without a scratch.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.

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The Johnny Manziel mystery: Biggest questions GMs/coaches face in evaluating QB for draft

By Greg Cosell April 14, 2014 2:59 AM

You're a general manager or a head coach in the NFL. The subject is Johnny Manziel. You're not interested in the white noise that saturates Manziel across the airwaves and social media. Or at any rate you shouldn't be. Your job may be on the line. You should be focused on the tape that defines Manziel as a player. That's your starting point. What do you see? How do you evaluate it? Do you believe he can transition well to the NFL?

You begin with his size: 5-foot-11¾, 207 pounds. How many NFL quarterbacks who fit that profile are successful? You have to visualize Manziel in the league, not on Saturday afternoons. Size matters for a quarterback in the NFL. You can't dismiss that, so you better think hard about it and have a plan for what you want to do with Manziel within the context of your team.

You immediately think Drew Brees and Russell Wilson. Brees is the foundation of his offense. He's brilliant both before and after the snap. He's a quick-twitch athlete with outstanding pocket command and movement. He throws with extraordinary anticipation and precise ball location. He's a master pocket passer.

Wilson is a complementary quarterback on a Seattle Seahawks team driven by the running game and the best defense in the NFL. He's not asked to throw as much as other quarterbacks. He's tightly managed. His aptitude for "structured improvisation," with wonderful intuitive awareness, is among the best in the NFL. He's never reckless or random in his movement.

Can Manziel develop into Brees down the road? That kind of quarterback demands uncommon mental and physical discipline, and high level football intelligence. Is Manziel that guy? Are you going to closely monitor Manziel and manage how he plays? Are you going to build your offense around a foundation runner? Do you have a defense that can keep every game close?

What was Manziel at Texas A&M? He was a shotgun spread quarterback who ran a relatively unsophisticated pass offense with basic route concepts and defined reads. He was not asked to do much involving pass protection. A film study of Manziel reveals he had little awareness of defensive fronts and pressures. His development will require a significant learning curve. That means time. How much is impossible to answer now.

You also see a lithe, fluid athlete with quick, almost ballet-like feet, outstanding agility and maneuverability, and movement outside the pocket. You see a quarterback with great vision and accuracy on the move, especially sprinting to his left. Not many quarterbacks can do that. You start to build a balance sheet of pros and cons. Where will you eventually fall?

The tape of the Vanderbilt and Mississippi State games reveals some good passes from the pocket, particularly seam throws. Those are NFL throws. You see flashes of coverage recognition and manipulation. He looks like a balanced pocket passer with good lower body mechanics, a loose arm and a natural throwing motion that featured good weight transfer to drive the ball with velocity. It isn't there consistently, but you see it. And you saw it throughout his 2013 season.

He does not have a refined sense of anticipation, and that's a concern considering the speed and reaction time of NFL defenses, but there were many throws in which he looked like a comfortable pocket quarterback. These are all positives about Manziel playing in your stadium on Sunday afternoons.

But you keep looking and evaluating. You watch every play. You pull up the LSU and Missouri games. And you find yourself seeing wide-open receivers, the primary reads on those routes, and Manziel, without any pressure, doesn't turn it loose. You noticed that against Vandy and Mississippi State, but it's more evident vs. LSU and Missouri. Why?

You put on more games and you're seeing it too often. Why is he not delivering the ball? Why is he not allowing the offense to work? Why is he not playing with the discipline that is the foundation of every passing game? Was he not coached to do that? Was he allowed to freelance whenever he wanted? Those are questions that need to be addressed.

You see a quarterback who creates his own problems with what appears to be a lack of understanding and discipline, and then once in a while he makes an unbelievable unstructured play. There's a sense that he makes it up as he goes, a shoot from the hip element that is so much fun and entertaining to watch. But you're not sure that will work in the NFL. Entertaining is great for fans and highlight shows, but it's not a quarterback attribute. A QB cannot live on the edge, play randomly and be consistently successful against NFL defenses.

Another thing stands out on tape: there's too wide a variation in his play. You love the throws when he has space in the pocket, whether the toss requires touch or a little juice. But there's too many in which he does not set his feet with balance, at times jumping in the air to throw the ball. Those throws didn't have much on them. You know in the NFL, those passes are interceptions waiting to happen.

The pocket throws are nice enough to make you think you have something to work with. You also visualize him breaking down defenses on third down with extended plays. Then his glaring lack of discipline pops into your head, all the throws he leaves on the field, and it makes you wonder: What will Manziel be in the NFL? Do I have a comfortable answer?

So you start debating with yourself, what kind of offense am I going to run if I draft Manziel early in the draft? Do I need to build a complete team around him, like the Seattle model with Wilson? Limit him as much as possible as he learns how to play NFL quarterback? Remember, Wilson ran an NFL offense at Wisconsin. Maybe put Manziel in the shotgun here and there to stress the defense, and make it account for read-option elements. Or take the opposite approach, and let Manziel basically run the same kind of offense he ran at Texas A&M? Spread it out, keep it simple, let him run around and hope he makes the spectacular plays that defined him in college. Is that viable in the NFL?

You think about how beat up Manziel was at the end of the season, and how it negatively impacted his overall performance. He was not the same player. Isn't it a big leap of faith to expect him to play that freewheeling style in the NFL? Bigger players, better athletes, all across the board. You know the SEC is the best conference in college football, but it's college football, not the NFL.

Decision time has come. You're on the clock. Is Johnny Manziel your guy? Are you willing to put your franchise in his hands?

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Ian Rapoport @RapSheet 3h

Asked an offensive coordinator about Manziel’s durability questions. “Guy was hit 380 times. And he didn’t miss anything. That’s durable.”

That doesnt really help his case, the fact that he was hit that much with two top 5 linemen.

He was probably too small to see over top of them and got hit as a result.

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Browns' Ray Farmer on Johnny Manziel: He's different

By Marc Sessler

Around the League Writer

Excerpt:

Ray Farmer sees plenty to like about Johnny Manziel, but the Browns general manager is still wrestling with the notion of drafting the Texas A&M prospect with Cleveland's fourth overall pick in next month's draft.

Praising Manziel as an "exciting, electric" player, Farmer also told reporters on Monday: "He's different."

"He's not the quintessential guy who everybody points to and says, 'This is how you would draw it up; this is the packaging you want,'" said Farmer, per the Akron Beacon Journal. "That speaks to a lot of what Johnny has been his entire life, (which) is different. It's not how you think about playing the position and being effective from the pocket."

Cleveland's front office was seen as obsessed with Manziel when former general manager Michael Lombardi was in charge, but Farmer has been rumored to desire a more prototypical passer.

Still, Farmer, who met with Manziel last week, called the latter a "good young man," telling reporters: "I don't think I have any reservations with who Johnny is."

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Rotoworld:

Speaking Monday, Cowboys executive VP Stephen Jones declined comment on the team's purported interest in Texas A&M QB Johnny Manziel.

"There’s not anything I can say about it," Jones said. "We haven’t quite gotten into sorting out the quarterbacks yet." It's not surprising Jones would decline comment, but it is surprising the idea has gained traction. Quarterback is one of the few positions Dallas has sorted out, while the cap hit for dealing Tony Romo would be through the roof. Manziel is the kind of player owner Jerry Jones has rarely been able to resist, but he's going to have to in this case.
Related: Cowboys

Jeff Sullivan of the Cowboys' website was told the team will "absolutely no(t)" draft Texas A&M QB Johnny Manziel.

The Manziel-to-Dallas idea has generated pre-draft noise in recent weeks, mostly because it's fun to imagine, but it's not happening. The Cowboys would absorb a nearly $30 million cap penalty to part with Tony Romo in 2014, and a $9.6 million penalty to move on from Romo next offseason. "For the record, I'm not guessing on the Cowboys not drafting Manziel," Sullivan tweeted. "I was told absolutely no by the highest of authorities." For better or worse, Dallas is stuck with Romo for at least two more years, and they won't be using their first-round pick to draft a guy who'll be riding the bench.
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Vikings, Buccaneers front-runners to draft Johnny Manziel

By Andy Fenelon NFL.com

With the exception of possibly the Green Bay Packers and Indianapolis Colts, it seems Johnny Manziel has been linked to just about every NFL team.

So where will Johnny Football ultimately land? It's still anyone's guess. Or as one former NFL exec told me: "If anyones says they know where Johnny Manziel will go, get their head examined."

Less than two weeks from the start of the draft, we try to make sense of it all, separating truth from rumor, and handicapping the race:

Front-runners

Vikings (40 percent chance): We aren't buying Mike Zimmer's contention that there are plenty of red flags with Manziel, or at least enough to scare the Vikings off. In fact, the new Vikings coach came off as disingenuous in his remarks after Manziel's pro day, which he called a "sideshow". That he went on a radio show to make the comments casts even more doubt on his sincerity. Yeah, we know, Zimmer is a defensive guy, but as a defensive guy, he knows what a nightmare if would be to game-plan for a Adrian-Peterson-Manziel tandem. Pick No. 8 might be the only obstacle to making this marriage happen; a trade-up might be in order.

Buccaneers (35 percent): Tampa Bay, which picks just ahead of Minnesota at No. 7, has been regularly linked to Manziel's Texas A&M teammate, WR Mike Evans, which makes a ton of sense. But the Buccaneers reportedly have Manziel on their short list of players for their first-round pick. It also makes sense when you think about teams that have a system in place (solid defense and running game) that could support a player like Manziel. Josh McCown can't be looked at as a longterm solution, and with a new regime, the jury is still very much out on second-year man Mike Glennon.

Not far behind

Browns (25 percent): It appears the Browns are getting more comfortable with the off-the-field Manziel, but is he the guy who can lead them to the top of a defensive-driven division? It seemed more likley Manziel would end up in Cleveland with the old regime. The new one failed to show up at his pro day, which is perplexing; if you were going to draft someone as controversial as Manziel, wouldn't you want to spend as much time as possible with him and see him in every situation? We believe the interest is there, but probably not at any expense. Pick No. 4 could be a reach, and he'll likely be gone at No. 26.

Jaguars (20 percent): NFL Media analyst Charles Davis sees Jacksonville as an ideal fit. As the former DC in Seattle, Gus Bradley has seen what can happen when you pair a mobile quarterback with a top defense. The Jaguars' defense is coming together, thanks to a free agency binge along the line. Chad Henne is not the longterm answer, and probably not a very good short-term solution either. Manziel would provide this moribund franchise life, and help build excitement and season tickey sales.

Rams (20 percent): There's no doubt about the Rams' interest in Manziel, but Pick No. 2 is probably too rich, and No. 13 might not be high enough to get it done. What we can see is the Rams trading down a few spots from No. 2, picking up extra draft selections, taking Manziel, and putting Sam Bradford on the trading block. You could argue it might be a little early to give up on Bradford, but he has had a difficult time staying healthy, and Manziel would offer an exciting, new start.

Stars would have to align

Raiders (12 percent): Manziel seems like an Al Davis type of pick, not necessarily a Reggie McKenzie one, although McKenzie saw first-hand in Green Bay what Brett Favre -- a player many have compared to Manziel -- did for a struggling franchise. The Raiders aren't tied to Matt Schaub longterm (his free agency deal is essentially a one-year commitment, so spending the No. 5 pick on Manziel wouldn't be s shocker. He was described as a "good kid, humble," when he visited earlier this month. Who knows what that means. Probably nothing.

Cowboys (8 percent): Jerry Jones is reportedly interested in keeping Manziel in-state, but the Cowboys owner has always been about winning now. We're not sure how picking Manziel helps them win immediately. While Tony Romo has had his struggles, especially in the post-season, he's still one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL. On the other hand, he is 34 and the clock is ticking. On his career ... and Jerry's. However, getting Manziel to drop to No. 16 where the Cowboys pick is problematic, and trading up might be prohibitive, as much as we'd like to see this happen.

Texans (5 percent): As of today, they're the only team which controls its Manziel destiny. But taking Manziel over Jadeveon Clowney or trading back and acquiring additional picks seems like a stretch. Manziel doesn't fit the type of quarterback Bill O'Brien has worked with in the past, and the memory of David Carr is still fresh in the mind of owner Bob McNair, who recently admitted he should have let Carr sit behind a veteran QB. Taking a quarterback with the top pick and sitting him is not going to play well in a city that believes its local football team is one or two impact players away from competing for a division crown. Especially if that quarterback is Ryan Fitzpatrick, Case Keenum or T.J. Yates. Feels like this team is willing to wait until the top of the second round for a player like Jimmy Garoppolo.

Long shots

Titans (4 percent): Ken Whisenhunt is open to the idea of bringing in a quarterback to replace Jake Locker, though the team still would like to see what its former first-rounder can do in a full season of health. Clearly, the Titans aren't married to Locker, but the quarterback of choice for them appears to be Derek Carr, not Manziel, even if both were available at Pick No. 11. Carr is a much better fit for what Whisenhunt wants to do in Tennessee.

Eagles (3 percent): Seems like the Manziel-to-Eagles rumors have been out there for a long time, or is it because former Oregon coach Chip Kelly almost signed Manziel out of college? Anyway, Manziel would be a perfect fit for the Eagles, but that might be the only thing going for this potential marriage. Philadelphia owns the No. 22 pick in the first round, and with very little draft-choice ammunition, the chances of the Eagles moving up are slim. And even if they could, would they throw away picks with Nick Foles alread on the roster?

Cardinals (2 percent): It's interesting to listen to Bruce Arians talk about Manziel. The Cardinals coach said at the combine that Manziel's height poses a "question mark." Arians is a straight shooter, and even though the Cardinals need to address the quarterback position, this draft, or certainly at Pick No. 20, doesn't have to be the place.

Jets (2 percent): The Jets would have to admit that taking Geno Smith was a mistake last year, and that's not likely to happen with Manziel or any other quarterback in the first round. But if Manziel slipped and was still on the board at 18 ...

Longer shot

Patriots (0.5 percent): The fact Bill Belichick brought Manziel in for a visit doesn't mean much. Belichick likes to play games and getting information from any source possible. If that means bringing in a guy he has no shot at drafting, so be it. The Patriots own the 29th pick in the first round; don't expect the guy notorious for trading back in drafts to suddenly move forward for Tom Brady's eventual replacement.

The math doesn't add up in this article!

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Rotoworld:

Scouts Inc.'s Todd McShay believes it is crucial that Texas A&M redshirt sophomore QB Johnny Manziel plays in 2013 to show improvements in his game.

"Based on tape... I've got a 3rd round grade on him," McShay said. "He needs more patience in the pocket. It's crucial that he plays." We absolutely agree that Manziel needs to consistently show the ability to win from the pocket. He flashed that skill but seemed to make his biggest impact on broken plays. Teams feel better about quarterbacks with height issues if they show great vision and throwing platforms with traffic around them in the pocket.

Late 1st round grade now.

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Vikings, Buccaneers front-runners to draft Johnny Manziel

By Andy Fenelon NFL.com

With the exception of possibly the Green Bay Packers and Indianapolis Colts, it seems Johnny Manziel has been linked to just about every NFL team.

So where will Johnny Football ultimately land? It's still anyone's guess. Or as one former NFL exec told me: "If anyones says they know where Johnny Manziel will go, get their head examined."

Less than two weeks from the start of the draft, we try to make sense of it all, separating truth from rumor, and handicapping the race:

Front-runners

Vikings (40 percent chance): We aren't buying Mike Zimmer's contention that there are plenty of red flags with Manziel, or at least enough to scare the Vikings off. In fact, the new Vikings coach came off as disingenuous in his remarks after Manziel's pro day, which he called a "sideshow". That he went on a radio show to make the comments casts even more doubt on his sincerity. Yeah, we know, Zimmer is a defensive guy, but as a defensive guy, he knows what a nightmare if would be to game-plan for a Adrian-Peterson-Manziel tandem. Pick No. 8 might be the only obstacle to making this marriage happen; a trade-up might be in order.

Buccaneers (35 percent): Tampa Bay, which picks just ahead of Minnesota at No. 7, has been regularly linked to Manziel's Texas A&M teammate, WR Mike Evans, which makes a ton of sense. But the Buccaneers reportedly have Manziel on their short list of players for their first-round pick. It also makes sense when you think about teams that have a system in place (solid defense and running game) that could support a player like Manziel. Josh McCown can't be looked at as a longterm solution, and with a new regime, the jury is still very much out on second-year man Mike Glennon.

Not far behind

Browns (25 percent): It appears the Browns are getting more comfortable with the off-the-field Manziel, but is he the guy who can lead them to the top of a defensive-driven division? It seemed more likley Manziel would end up in Cleveland with the old regime. The new one failed to show up at his pro day, which is perplexing; if you were going to draft someone as controversial as Manziel, wouldn't you want to spend as much time as possible with him and see him in every situation? We believe the interest is there, but probably not at any expense. Pick No. 4 could be a reach, and he'll likely be gone at No. 26.

Jaguars (20 percent): NFL Media analyst Charles Davis sees Jacksonville as an ideal fit. As the former DC in Seattle, Gus Bradley has seen what can happen when you pair a mobile quarterback with a top defense. The Jaguars' defense is coming together, thanks to a free agency binge along the line. Chad Henne is not the longterm answer, and probably not a very good short-term solution either. Manziel would provide this moribund franchise life, and help build excitement and season tickey sales.

Rams (20 percent): There's no doubt about the Rams' interest in Manziel, but Pick No. 2 is probably too rich, and No. 13 might not be high enough to get it done. What we can see is the Rams trading down a few spots from No. 2, picking up extra draft selections, taking Manziel, and putting Sam Bradford on the trading block. You could argue it might be a little early to give up on Bradford, but he has had a difficult time staying healthy, and Manziel would offer an exciting, new start.

Stars would have to align

Raiders (12 percent): Manziel seems like an Al Davis type of pick, not necessarily a Reggie McKenzie one, although McKenzie saw first-hand in Green Bay what Brett Favre -- a player many have compared to Manziel -- did for a struggling franchise. The Raiders aren't tied to Matt Schaub longterm (his free agency deal is essentially a one-year commitment, so spending the No. 5 pick on Manziel wouldn't be s shocker. He was described as a "good kid, humble," when he visited earlier this month. Who knows what that means. Probably nothing.

Cowboys (8 percent): Jerry Jones is reportedly interested in keeping Manziel in-state, but the Cowboys owner has always been about winning now. We're not sure how picking Manziel helps them win immediately. While Tony Romo has had his struggles, especially in the post-season, he's still one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL. On the other hand, he is 34 and the clock is ticking. On his career ... and Jerry's. However, getting Manziel to drop to No. 16 where the Cowboys pick is problematic, and trading up might be prohibitive, as much as we'd like to see this happen.

Texans (5 percent): As of today, they're the only team which controls its Manziel destiny. But taking Manziel over Jadeveon Clowney or trading back and acquiring additional picks seems like a stretch. Manziel doesn't fit the type of quarterback Bill O'Brien has worked with in the past, and the memory of David Carr is still fresh in the mind of owner Bob McNair, who recently admitted he should have let Carr sit behind a veteran QB. Taking a quarterback with the top pick and sitting him is not going to play well in a city that believes its local football team is one or two impact players away from competing for a division crown. Especially if that quarterback is Ryan Fitzpatrick, Case Keenum or T.J. Yates. Feels like this team is willing to wait until the top of the second round for a player like Jimmy Garoppolo.

Long shots

Titans (4 percent): Ken Whisenhunt is open to the idea of bringing in a quarterback to replace Jake Locker, though the team still would like to see what its former first-rounder can do in a full season of health. Clearly, the Titans aren't married to Locker, but the quarterback of choice for them appears to be Derek Carr, not Manziel, even if both were available at Pick No. 11. Carr is a much better fit for what Whisenhunt wants to do in Tennessee.

Eagles (3 percent): Seems like the Manziel-to-Eagles rumors have been out there for a long time, or is it because former Oregon coach Chip Kelly almost signed Manziel out of college? Anyway, Manziel would be a perfect fit for the Eagles, but that might be the only thing going for this potential marriage. Philadelphia owns the No. 22 pick in the first round, and with very little draft-choice ammunition, the chances of the Eagles moving up are slim. And even if they could, would they throw away picks with Nick Foles alread on the roster?

Cardinals (2 percent): It's interesting to listen to Bruce Arians talk about Manziel. The Cardinals coach said at the combine that Manziel's height poses a "question mark." Arians is a straight shooter, and even though the Cardinals need to address the quarterback position, this draft, or certainly at Pick No. 20, doesn't have to be the place.

Jets (2 percent): The Jets would have to admit that taking Geno Smith was a mistake last year, and that's not likely to happen with Manziel or any other quarterback in the first round. But if Manziel slipped and was still on the board at 18 ...

Longer shot

Patriots (0.5 percent): The fact Bill Belichick brought Manziel in for a visit doesn't mean much. Belichick likes to play games and getting information from any source possible. If that means bringing in a guy he has no shot at drafting, so be it. The Patriots own the 29th pick in the first round; don't expect the guy notorious for trading back in drafts to suddenly move forward for Tom Brady's eventual replacement.

The math doesn't add up in this article!

Not only doesn't it add up, but it's so far off, it's ridiculous. What a dodo.

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Brady Quinn: Johnny Manziel will have instant impact in NFL

By Bryan Fischer

College Football 24/7 writer

Brady Quinn has had an up-and-down NFL career, but he knows a good quarterback when he sees one. After getting a chance to watch some film of some of the top signal-callers in the 2014 NFL Draft, Quinn put on his analyst hat on Monday's "Path to the Draft" and ranked the top five players at the position.

Jimmy Garoppolo made the cut as the fifth-best option, just behind Teddy Bridgewater and Derek Carr. Central Florida quarterback Blake Bortles earned high praise and was slotted as the No. 2 player.

And the best quarterback available according to Quinn? None other than the electric Johnny Manziel.

"I think he's going to step right in and have a huge impact," said Quinn, who was the No. 22 pick in the 2007 draft. "My biggest thing about Johnny Manziel is that some team will have to trust him to play like he's capable of playing. They can't say, 'You have to fit in our system.' They're going to have to adjust to how Johnny Football plays."

That has become a key question in projecting where the elusive Manziel lands in the draft. Mock drafts have him going all over the board, from Quinn's former team, the Browns, with the fourth overall pick to the Rams at No. 13 and a host of other spots. Houston and Minnesota could be in the conversation to draft him, but Texans head coach Bill O'Brien and Vikings offensive coordinator Norv Turner have typically developed strong-armed pocket passers and have rarely coached mobile quarterbacks in their systems.

Quinn spent some time on the Seahawks roster and saw up close how an offense can be tailored around a player who can make plays with his feet. He doesn't make the comparison lightly, but Quinn certainly sees a little of Seattle's Super Bowl-winning quarterback Russell Wilson in Manziel. Quinn said he feels Manziel should expect a similar transition to the NFL as offensive coordinators try to rein in his recklessness on the field a little.

"One of the things you're going to see them place an emphasis on is not taking as many hits," Quinn said. "When you compare him to anybody else in the NFL right now, it's got to be Russell Wilson. You see how Seattle has embraced his ability to improvise after a play breaks down, that's where some of the biggest plays happen. I think Johnny Manziel will do the same exact thing when he enters the NFL."

The success of Wilson has certainly helped boost Manziel's stock heading into the draft to the point where he's assumed the top spot on NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock's position-by-position rankings. If he can live up to Quinn's praise and repeat Wilson's success in his first few years in the league then some team will certainly be very happy they took a chance on Johnny Football.

Follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter @BryanDFischer.

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Report: Texans still considering Johnny Manziel with first pick

By Bryan Fischer

College Football 24/7 writer

The biggest question in the NFL right now? What is Houston Texans general manager Rick Smith thinking heading into the 2014 NFL Draft?

The team has a wealth of options as they head to a deep draft looking to quickly rebuild from last year's disastrous 2-14 record. The growing consensus is the team will select South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney with the first overall pick, adding one of the most talented players coming out of college in a decade.

But there's still a need for a franchise quarterback for new coach Bill O'Brien to work with. Plugged-in beat writer John McClain of the Houston Chronicle wrote Tuesday that the Texans still have Johnny Manziel under consideration for the top pick as a result.

"Everybody knows the Texans are going to draft a quarterback. The question is when," wrote McClain. "As it stands, I believe the Texans are trying to decide between defensive end Jadeveon Clowney and quarterback Johnny Manziel with the first overall pick."

Talk has heated up the past week that Houston will trade down if they get an acceptable offer, possibly to get Manziel at a better value in the first round. That is in line with what NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt has heard, noting the Texans could select Clowney and trade him to a team who selects the quarterback they want.

Manziel, the draft's top quarterback according to NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock, was a college star just an hour away from Houston at Texas A&M. While Clowney would give the team a dangerous front seven to contain division rival Andrew Luck, the club could take a hit on the public-relations front if they end up bypassing the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback.

"If the Texans select Clowney, he'll never live up to expectations and will suffer the same criticism that dogged Mario Williams for six seasons. Averaging 10 or 11 sacks per season won't be enough for fans angry the Texans bypassed Johnny Football," McClain added. "Selecting Clowney means they'd have to draft a quarterback and give him time to develop, perhaps a season. If the Texans choose Manziel and he helps make them a playoff team, they'll cut into the Cowboys' popularity for the first time."

The issue the Texans might have if they do explore trading back is who might be available for them to take. According to NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport, Clowney, Khalil Mack, Sammy Watkins and Greg Robinson are widely considered to be the four elite prospects in this year's draft. Moving back to Atlanta's spot in the first round (sixth overall) would put them outside the range to draft any of those four and could prevent the team from landing Manziel if the Browns draft him fourth overall.

Thus the conundrum for Smith and company. Between a trade, Johnny and Jadeveon, the team will at least have plenty of options when the draft rolls around next week.

Follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter @BryanDFischer.

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Mayock: Johnny Manziel a top-10 pick if questions check out

By Bryan Fischer

College Football 24/7 writer

The quarterback position incites the most debate when the NFL draft rolls around, and that has been the case with the 2014 version as well. While a consensus has started to form regarding the top four prospects at the position -- Johnny Manziel, Blake Bortles, Derek Carr and Teddy Bridgewater -- the order they fall in seems to depend on your personal preference.

If you're basing things solely on college tape, Bridgewater stands out. If you want prototypical NFL quarterback size and arm, it's probably Bortles who tops your list. A few analysts have fallen in love with Carr's arm talent. NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock tends to be a traditionalist when it comes to evaluating signal-callers, but he's sticking his neck out for the most dynamic quarterback of the bunch this year and hitching his wagons to Manziel.

"Out of all the quarterbacks, if I had to take one -- you put a gun to my head and you're only allowed one -- that would be my guy," Mayock said of Manziel on The Rich Eisen Podcast. "And I say it with trepidation. But I think the most interesting conversations I've had about Manziel have been with defensive coordinators, all of whom say, 'We don't want any part of dealing with that guy.'"

Coming out of the NFL Scouting Combine, Mayock had Manziel ranked as the second-best quarterback in the draft class. Between his impressive pro day in full pads at Texas A&M and further evaluation, however, Mayock has seen enough to elevate Manziel to his top spot at the position in his latest rankings and has come around to the point where he believes Manziel is a top 10 pick who can win football games in the NFL.

One of the biggest knocks on Manziel has typically been about his height, but Mayock hasn't focused on that negative as much as others. Instead he has harped on Johnny Football's ability to stay in the pocket and make NFL throws with an arm that might be one of the stronger ones in the draft. Off-the-field issues are also a major concern for most teams looking for a quarterback but Mayock thinks that if they can get over that, they could be getting a special NFL player under center.

"It's two things: One is off the field -- you want him as the face of your franchise," Mayock said. "Do you want to manage this kid off the field for four or five years? Number two is, you have to believe that he can win from the pocket. And if he can go through his progressions, if he can throw the ball down the field, and then do his Johnny Football thing, I think you get the best of both worlds.

"If the answer to those questions is, I'm OK with him off the field, and I believe he can win in the pocket, you take him in the top 10."

Recent NFL.com mock drafts are all over the board as to where Manziel will wind up. He could wind up as high as third overall to the Jacksonville Jaguars or fall to the Cleveland Browns and the 26th pick. A report surfaced Tuesday saying the Houston Texans still have Manziel under consideration for the first overall selection, but Mayock holds the opinion that might not be best for the franchise if they truly want to grab a quarterback in the first round.

"I think they want to trade down, my guess says they want to trade down," he said. "If they have to pull a card at one, I've got to think it's Clowney at one, and come back at 33 and get your quarterback. I don't like it the other way. I don't like Manziel or Bortles at one and come back at 33. I'd much rather do it the other way."

No matter how things wind up playing out come draft night, one thing is for certain: Mayock, like the rest of us, can't wait to see what Manziel winds up doing in the NFL after being the toast of college football the past two seasons.

Follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter @BryanDFischer.

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Johnny Manziel unlikely to fall out of top 10, several teams say

By Bryan Fischer

College Football 24/7 writer

If you're looking for a popular player in the 2014 NFL Draft, the first name on your list is probably Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel. To say he's in the spotlight heading to New York City would be the understatement of the season.

Everybody has an opinion on Johnny Football and where he might end up in the draft, from the Houston Texans to the Dallas Cowboys to the Philadelphia Eagles and everywhere in between. According to NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport, though, if teams covet the energetic signal-caller, they'd better have a top 10 pick in the draft if they want a shot of landing him.

"From everyone I'm talking to, including several teams in the top 10, everyone would be surprised if he actually does fall out of the top 10," Rapoport said on "NFL Total Access." "Where would he go? He could go to the Bucs at seven as they might draft a quarterback. He could go to the Vikings at eight, and I'm not ready to rule out the Jaguars at three and the Browns at four. That's how much love Johnny Manziel gets."

NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock lists Manziel as the top quarterback in the draft and has gushed over him since an impressive pro day. Though the Heisman Trophy winner often gets knocked for height or relying on his improvisational ability too much, Mayock believes that teams will ask themselves two questions regarding the quarterback: off the field is he the face of the franchise, and do you think he can win in the pocket? For Mayock, the answer to both questions is yes, and Manziel is deserving of a top 10 pick based on his talent.

It appears that the rest of the league has also come around on Manziel and now tend to agree with that assessment.

"I had a quarterback's coach tell me that if you turn on the film, every three or four plays you see something spectacular," Rapoport said. "You either love him or you hate him, and this coach was feeling a lot of love. I talked to a general manager who said he has no off-the-field concerns for Johnny Manziel and compared him to a point guard because he makes everyone play fast. I talked to an offensive coordinator who said he's so unique that no one knows what to do with him.

"I asked about the durability factor -- could Manziel get hurt in the pros," Rapoport said. "He said Manziel was hit 380 times last season and hardly missed a play."

That's a number of positive statements that directly address concerns about Johnny Football's ability to play at the next level. Since it only takes one team to fall in love with a player to draft them, things are looking pretty good for Manziel's future.

Houston is a possible landing spot for Manziel with the first overall pick, but the growing consensus remains the team will take Jadeveon Clowney or trade down to fill other needs. Mock drafts do have the signal-caller going everywhere from Jacksonville to Minnesota, but Tampa Bay is a destination that is gaining steam around the league as Lovie Smith considers grabbing a quarterback of the future for the organization.

Manziel will be at Radio City Music Hall on May 8 for the draft, and it's becoming increasingly likely he won't have to wait long before hearing his name called by the commissioner based on chatter around the league.

Follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter @BryanDFischer.

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take Johnny Football issues or not - I was a Cam Newton hater, if I was CAR GM I'd have never drafted him and would have never lived it down

take Johnny Football Houston

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take Johnny Football issues or not - I was a Cam Newton hater, if I was CAR GM I'd have never drafted him and would have never lived it down

take Johnny Football Houston

[pantherclub]

But JFF isn't as big as Cam!

[/pantherclub]

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  • Faust changed the title to Official Johnny Manziel Thread - participates in Fan Controlled Football: 'Feels like I'm super washed up'

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