Johnny Manziel reveals just how unready for NFL he was to succeed with the Browns


Remember when the Cleveland Browns used a first-round pick in the NFL draft on Johnny Manziel? 

Well, it turns out that was an even bigger mistake than anyone might have realized at the time. 

Just ask Manziel. 

The 2012 Heisman Trophy winner told the Dan Patrick Show on Wednesday just how unprepared he was for the NFL – and how little the Browns did to make up for his shortcomings. 

In the full interview, Manziel takes the blame for his inability to adjust to life in the NFL before he found himself out of work and facing legal troubles in 2016. 

Some in the short-sighted social media hoard unsurprisingly accused him of “blaming the Browns” for his failures, but that’s not really fair or accurate. 

Manziel makes clear he fell short because he didn’t understand what it took to succeed at the highest level, a challenge no doubt faced by many rookies. 

(He’s also pretty brutal in assessing how little the spread offense at Texas A&M prepared him for playing quarterback in the pros.)

If the Browns did not provide an adequate safety net for him – or know ahead of time he would need more guidance than the average newcomer -- they do deserve some of the blame for the whole thing not working out. 

“I don’t know if I was just tired or overwhelmed with everything that was going on in my life – I’m not going to make an excuse for it,” Manziel said. “At the end of the day, it’s completely my fault in how I treated my job as far as being a first-round pick and a guy they wanted to turn a franchise around. I didn’t work hard enough to be that guy, and it’s a regret I’m going to have to live with.” 

Now married and sober, he is giving pro football another shot. 

What he hopes is a long road back to the NFL begins with something called “The Spring League,” that bills itself as “an elite developmental league & scouting event for professional football talent” in Austin, Texas. 

There are four teams in the league, and they will play two games apiece in April. 

Then what? 

Well, we know of a certain NFL owner in Southwest Ohio who loves nothing more than a good redemption story… 


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Sports

Cincinnati Bengals: 5 storylines to watch in today’s game at Carolina
Cincinnati Bengals: 5 storylines to watch in today’s game at Carolina

The Cincinnati Bengals are looking for their first 3-0 start in three years when they face the Carolina Panthers on the road Sunday. The Bengals opened the 2015 season 8-0 and went on to make the playoffs for a fifth straight year but haven’t been back since. This season already feels much different than a year ago when they finished 7-9 for...
Ohio State notes: Haskins continues showcase accuracy
Ohio State notes: Haskins continues showcase accuracy

J.T. Barrett broke almost all the school passing records the last four seasons, not to mention a bunch of Big Ten marks. The way he’s playing in his first season as a starter, Dwayne Haskins won’t stick around the college game long enough to challenge any career marks. Haskins continued to compile stats worthy of the Heisman Trophy in his...
HS Roundup 9/22: Packnett paces Dunbar football in win over Woodward

Greg Packnett passed for 145 yards and three touchdowns in helping spur Dunbar football to a 22-20 win versus Woodward at Welcome Stadium on Saturday night. Packnett connected with James Murray and Bryce Smith on TD passes in the first half and hit Jaquan Lusbourgh with the go-ahead score early in the fourth quarter. Aaron Richardson tacked on the...
HS Scores 9/22: Carroll finishes strong in Midwest Catholic race

Football Saturday’s Results Dunbar 22, Woodward 20 Landmark Christian 34, Middletown Christian 13 Friday’s Results Allen East 50, Delphos Jefferson 6 Alter 45, Fenwick 20 Anderson 47, Withrow 12 Badin 42, Roger Bacon 35, OT Bellbrook 21, Franklin 17 Bellefontaine 14, Ben Logan 6 Brookville 42, Carlisle 2 Butler 13, Xenia 7, OT Celina 42...
5 things to know about Ohio State’s blowout of Tulane
5 things to know about Ohio State’s blowout of Tulane

Ohio State rolled Tulane 49-6 on Saturday to end a rocky couple of months for the program.  So maybe it was only natural the state’s official rock song would be what brought Urban Meyer back to normal coaching the fourth-ranked Buckeyes.  “Between the third and fourth quarter, hearing the band play, ‘Hang on Sloopy.&rsquo...
More Stories