The Dallas Cowboys passing on Johnny Manziel was one of the biggest disappointments of the NFL Draft.
Dallas was sitting there at No. 16 with Manziel still on the board. Everyone knew that the team liked him and that they were strongly considering him. Everyone knows that Jerry Jones loves publicity and making the splashy/risky pick. It would only have been too perfect for Manziel to go to America’s Team.
But the Cowboys didn’t bite and instead selected Notre Dame offensive lineman Zack Martin.
Jones shared in an interview with NFL Network how close he was to making the pick.
“I want you to know almost as I was handing in the card it was that close to putting the Manziel card in,” Jones told Rich Eisen and Michael Irvin.
Jones then explained that he wanted to do what he did when he bought the team — gamble.
“Nobody thought it would work. The Cowboys were busted. Broke. Make a more of an unconventional decision here and basically take the risk.”
Jones resisted his instinct to make the risky pick. He says he had to consider Tony Romo’s feelings when making the pick and that he felt Romo could handle the distraction of having Manziel around.
“Well first of all I feel so strongly about Tony Romo. But Tony Romo could have handled being on the same team with Johnny Manziel. Both quarterbacks. He could have handled that,” Jones said when talking about how Romo would have dealt with the Manziel distraction.
Though he passed on Manziel, Jones believes the Heisman Trophy winner will be a great pro.
“Manziel’s special. I know him personally. I know he’s going to be a success in the National Football League. And it was a hard decision. It was probably one the rest of my career I will think about.”
Jones also says Manziel was the top player on the Cowboys’ draft board by three players.
After the Cowboys passed on him, Manziel texted the Browns and told them to draft him. They did and the city went nuts.
Manziel’s had an offseason of partying and has disappointed the Browns so far, and he appears likely to open the season as a second-stringer. We’ll see whether the Cowboys made the right pick. What we do know is that nothing would have been more exciting than Johnny Football.
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