Sports

The Curious Case of Johnny Football

Story by Charlie Crowley, Sports Intern
Photo Courtesy of Erik Drost

Potential. Dynamic. Enigmatic. Party animal. All of these words have been used at one point or another to describe Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel. Manziel, a product of Texas A&M, has been known more for his off the field antics rather than his play on the field since entering the NFL in 2014.

Rewind back to Radio City Music Hall on May 8, 2014. Manziel is fresh off his successful college career and is hoping to be well on his way to a successful pro career as well. At the draft, he waited. Then he waited some more. Finally, with the 23rd pick, the Browns selected him. The whirlwind of media attention that has followed since that day has done nothing but grown, putting everything ‘Johnny Football’ does under a microscope.

Since college, Manziel has been known as a partier. He was arrested the summer before his first college game in June 2012 after being named starting quarterback. He’s been kicked out of frat parties, left the Manning Passing Camp early after oversleeping, gotten in fights, feuds, and certainly has a knack for putting himself in hot water. He’s done the rehab route, but it has not appeared to work. On top of that, his on the field performance has been less than satisfying. In just under two season in the NFL, Manziel has not played up to his coaches’ par, with a completion rate of under 60 percent while also posting a career quarterback rating of 78.5, well below average for a quarterback that some would consider the turning point for Cleveland when he was drafted.

What should the Cleveland Browns do with Manziel? They have given him a long leash to work with so far, but they shorten it a bit more every time he screws up. Most would say they’re being too lenient on a guy who runs into trouble and parties and can’t perform – Rob Gronkowski of the New England Patriots lives a similar lifestyle, but is still one of the best tight ends in the league. There is always talk of Cleveland letting go of Manziel but they seem hesitant to pull the trigger. Are they waiting for a potential star to shine? Or do they know the return on trading him would be low? The Manziel mystery moves on, and sadly, no one can seem to solve it.

About the writer…

IMG_4063Charlie Crowley is a junior studying communication and journalism.He is The Saint‘s Sports Intern and future Sports Editor. He spends most of his time playing hockey, sleeping, eating, and on Reddit. He’s also a Hoosier, and proud of it, but can’t hit the open three to save his life.

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