Johnny Manziel was a hot commodity coming out of college. The Browns believed Manziel could be their future franchise quarterback and snagged him with the 22nd pick.
However, Manziel’s NFL career appears to be done and dusted. The Browns have moved on from him, and it looks like Manziel has moved on from the NFL as well. Manziel made headlines a few days ago when he was seen making plays in the Fan Controlled Football League.
Shannon Sharpe recently appeared on Undisputed to bash Manziel for playing in the league. He believes the move looks pathetic:
Johnny Manziel is a joke and he wasted all of that ability. It’s sad. He didn’t care and when guys don’t care, I don’t care either. This is embarrassing. This should be beneath Johnny. pic.twitter.com/Yzziefz7la
— shannon sharpe (@ShannonSharpe) February 15, 2021
Johnny Manziel’s Path to Becoming a First Round Pick
While Manziel may not have panned out in the NFL, there’s no denying that he had an absolutely stellar College Football career. In 2012 as a freshman, Manziel took home the Heisman Trophy that year and a lot more too.
He became the first freshman to throw for 3,000 yards and rush for 1,000 yards in a season and joined only four other players in NCAA history to do that.
He whizzed past Tim Tebow and Cam Newton in setting the record for the highest offensive production in the SEC with 4,600 yards.
Manziel added numerous trophies to his shelf that year. Apart from the Heisman, he also won the SEC Freshman of the Year Award, College Football Performance National Freshman of the Year Award, and the Davey O’Brien Award.
He was the first player ever to win the Heisman and the Davey as a freshman. Manziel played another phenomenal season in 2013 where he finished fifth in Heisman voting. After that, he chose to declare for the NFL draft.
Manziel ended his college career throwing for 7,820 yards, passing for 63 touchdowns to only 22 interceptions, and rushing for 2,169 yards and 30 touchdowns for Texas A&M. There was no doubt about it. Manziel looked like a sure-fire first-round pick.
To add on, he put in an impressive throwing day at Texas A&M’s Pro Day. There, he completed 64 of 66 passes to six different receivers. He looked like a top-five pick at this point.
However, there were concerns with Manziel’s off-the-field behavior. In 2013, he was suspended for the first half of the Texas game against Rice University for allegedly signing autographs for money. Thus, Manziel wasn’t selected in the top five but instead at 22 by the ill-fated Cleveland Browns.
What Happened to Johnny Manziel? Manziel’s Demise & His Exit From the NFL
Well, Manziel’s shenanigans seemed to carry over into his NFL career. Excess partying and a lack of commitment to his job relegated Manziel to a designated backup for the majority of his short career.
In the summer of 2014, Manziel was repeatedly photographed in less than ideal scenarios. Some involved him with a lot of alcohol around others with rolled up dollar bills, and the biggest concern was the fact that Manziel refused to take accountability.
For instance, he even told reporters that he’d be unwilling to “to change for anybody.” In his first team meeting with the Browns, Manziel showed up late which led to a fine.
Manziel was fined again when he flipped off the Washington Football Team (then the Redskins) bench. The fine came up to $12,000, and Brian Hoyer was named the starter over Manziel.
Manziel did eventually get an opportunity to start, but he botched that going 10 for 18 for only 80 yards and two interceptions.
Following more issues, Manziel eventually entered rehab in 2015. While he worked hard to make his way back to being a dedicated football player, Manziel never reached the levels he touched as a college student. The Browns cut ties with Manziel in 2016, and that was it for the Manziel era.
It was devastating for Browns fans, and it quickly made Manziel one of the most polarizing and controversial figures in the history of the game. Chandler Parsons, then small forward of the Dallas Mavericks, summed up Manziel’s career pretty well saying he’s “a good kid” who made some “tough decisions.”
Manziel was also involved in domestic violence issues with his girlfriend Colleen Crowley, and his partying habits never quite ended. Ultimately, Money Manziel was responsible for his own downfall.
Where is Manziel Now? Will Johnny Manziel Ever Make an NFL Comeback?
The answer to that is no. Manziel himself has acknowledged that his NFL career is a thing of the past, and he wouldn’t consider it at all right now.
“If I got an offer to go back to the NFL … or any other league that plays serious, competitive football, I have zero interest, zero desire…My heart’s not in it anymore. I don’t love football the way I used to love football. Over the course of the last year, I’ve come to peace with that.”
While Manziel may not make a return to the NFL, he has taken up a career in the new Fan Controlled Football League, where he was seen making some dazzling plays.
johnny manziel looking good on his first ever play in the fcf pic.twitter.com/0WNZ5GnAPf
— Jordan Heck (@JordanHeckFF) February 14, 2021
Manziel never really adapted to the NFL environment, as he noted that it was much different from what he could do when he was in college. As a result, things, rather unsurprisingly, never worked out. However, Manziel appears to be at peace with his decision. He knows that the NFL wasn’t the choice for him, and he’s alright with it.
After all, he did try to make his way back, even going to rehab. In the end, it didn’t go according to plan, but that’s more than okay. Manziel is moving on, but he’s still trying to find a way to do what he once loved: play football.