The Cleveland Browns moved up in the 2014 NFL Draft with a quarterback in mind. No, it was not the guy everyone thought was going to be their choice. Teddy Bridgewater was the guy many thought would be the 1st pick of the 2014 NFL Draft. But after some scouts saw him workout and questioned his throwing, he began to tumble down draft boards. The other quarterback people were talking about was Johnny Manziel. People loved the excitement he brought to the college game. But there were questions as to how his style would fit in the pros. The decision was right there for the Cleveland Browns as they traded up to obtain the 22nd pick. Were they going to take the falling quarterback in Bridgewater or get the guy that intrigued some and infuriated others? Well, the owner of the Browns, Jimmy Haslam, was very intrigued by Johnny Manziel. And he was so intrigued with him that he decided to take him over Bridgewater. And with that, the Manziel era in Cleveland was set to begin. But unfortunately for the Browns, it was grounded before it got started. Tuesday, the Browns announced they were going to release the troubled quarterback in March when the new NFL year for business starts. And with that, Manziel will be without a team to play on.
The oft-troubled quarterback had plenty of chances to make things right. The Browns did not want to give up on him. But eventually the Browns had their hand forced when Manziel would continue to ignore the things they asked him to do. And as a result of his partying, drinking and potential domestic violence issues, he now finds himself teamless. Many would not have an issue with Manziel partying. And unfortunately, the coverage of his issues went a little overboard in the media. But still, Manziel knew the stipulations and chose to ignore what the Browns requested of him. And to top it all off, the potential of domestic violence did not make him look too good to them. So instead of the team waiting to see what he would look like under Hue Jackson, the team is more than likely looking for a new quarterback. There are some that will be wondering what happens next with Manziel. But there is only one thing Johnny should be thinking about: help. He has an issue with alcohol among other things. Anytime you disguise yourself to be in Vegas to party and drink when you’re supposed to be around your team, then you know you have to get some help. He also reportedly showed up to practice drunk and the team deemed it a concussion and that he would be out for the following game. That kind of activity from him screams help and that is exactly what he needs. And even though he went to rehab for thirty days, it was not enough for him. He needs the whole offseason to get it right at the least. Because if he does not get it right, he could cause trouble to himself and trouble to others around him.
Manziel has definitely earned not having a job right now. He carelessly threw away his career because he wanted to do what he wanted to do. But even in that, there will be someone that wants to take a chance on him. That someone could be Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. And for those that think he won’t take a chance, look at what he did last season signing controversial defensive end Greg Hardy. All Jones wants to do is win and if he thinks Manziel can be the guy behind Tony Romo, then he is all for giving him a shot. Besides, Manziel cannot be any worse than Matt Cassel, Kellen Moore and departed backup Brandon Weeden. But again, it will be interesting to see what all Jerry agrees to should he sign him there. If he has learned anything from his past, Jerry will get Manziel help and have restrictions like he did for wide receiver Dez Bryant. If he is able to get that type of security around Manziel and put language in his contract that prohibits certain things, then Jones may have a chance to get Johnny on the right track. But again, Johnny tends to follow the beat of his own drum and that can tend to get him in trouble.
The Manziel era was one in a long lists of disappointments for this current Cleveland regime. He never really touched the field and we may never get to know what he would have been as a starter consistently in the NFL. But what we do know if that Johnny has to get Johnny together first. He has to want to get himself on the right track on his own before someone can help him. And at this point, there is no indication that he even wants any help. But for him to have a chance to revive his career, Manziel must decide he wants to clean up his mess. After all, he could have done better and not created this drama. But instead he stirred up more things off the field than on the field. The onus is on him whether he wants to be in the NFL or not. And with the release coming in March, the reality may be starting to set in for him that he needs to get his act together. He has gotten way more chances than many NFL players and athletes get. But even with that, eventually the chances run out.