Johnny Manziel to wear helmet and shoulder pads while throwing at pro day

Johnny ManzielJohnny Manziel is holding a personal pro day for NFL scouts and coaches on Thursday, and it’s kind of a big deal. What other player can you think of that would get George H.W. Bush and Gov. Rick Perry to attend his private workout?

Manziel is doing things a bit differently, and we don’t just mean his guest list. Unlike other quarterbacks who have held private workouts, he will wear a helmet and shoulder pads while throwing passes. Most players throw for teams in shorts and a t-shirt. NFL.com’s Gil Brandt asked Manziel why he was going with the unorthodox approach.

“Isn’t the game played with (a helmet and shoulder pads) on?” Manziel replied.

He has a point. Almost all quarterbacks find it easier to showcase their accuracy and arm strength without restrictions, but Manziel wants to show NFL teams exactly what they would be getting by drafting him. If Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer is any indication, teams want to know every little detail.

“I want to talk to the custodian. I want to talk to his teammates,” Zimmer told USA Today Sports on Wednesday. “I want to talk to his landlord. I want to find out those things,” Zimmer said Wednesday. “We’ll know what kind of football player he is by the end of the day and how he does with all that other stuff, but it’s all the other intangible things.”

Manziel will also be throwing while under a simulated pass rush.

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Johnny Manziel posts another slam dunk video for 10-foot rim skeptics

Johnny Manziel posted a video to his Instagram account on Monday that showcased his dunking ability. We along with many others were impressed with the display, but many skeptics thought something was off about it. Namely, they they went the Billy Hoyle and asked if the basket was regulation height.

Well Manziel heard from the skeptics, so he posted another video on Tuesday. This shows him dunking in slow motion, and when he approaches the basket, he looks like he’s about halfway to the rim. Translation? Yeah, it looks 10 feet high to me.

Johnny Manziel dunk

Of course I’m no expert here and could totally be wrong, but I’m buying it. He definitely got up in that video.

Johnny Manziel holds his own personal dunk contest (Video)

With the NFL Draft less than two months away, Johnny Manziel is pulling out all the stops to prove he should be the No. 1 overall player selected. We know Johnny Football can run. We know he can throw. We know he has intangibles and a winner’s mentality. But does he have hops?

On Monday, Manziel posted a video on Instagram of him holding his own personal dunk contest. He can actually throw it down for a guy who’s generously listed at 6-foot-1. His performance was just slightly behind his boy LeBron’s personal dunk contest, but Manziel definitely has hops.


Will that athleticism be enough to convince the Houston Texans to draft Manziel? We’ll find out.

Johnny Manziel has shoes with Texas A&M and Oregon logos on them


Johnny Manziel has officially moved on from Texas A&M and is preparing for life in the NFL, but that isn’t going to stop him from showing allegiance to the Aggies. Manziel signed an endorsement deal with Nike earlier this month, which probably helps explain why he recently showed off a new pair of Oregon-themed sneakers on Instagram.

As many of you know, Nike founder and chairman Phil Knight attended Oregon. It’s the reason they get more than half a dozen insane new uniforms throughout the course of a season. Still, Manziel had enough loyalty to have “Johnny Football” and the Texas A&M logo stitched inside the tongue of his new kicks. What a guy.

As OregonLive.com also reminded us, Manziel and Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota have been friends since they were both being recruited by the Ducks in 2010. If Manziel starts getting shoes with Alabama logos on them, Aggies fans can go nuts.

Warren Moon compares Johnny Manziel to Tim Tebow

Johnny ManzielJohnny Manziel and Tim Tebow both won the Heisman Trophy in college. They also both played in the daunting SEC Conference. And there was that time Manziel wore Tebow’s New York Jets jersey to a party. Other than that, they have very little in common. Don’t tell that to Hall of Fame quarterback Warren Moon.

Moon told The Loop on KILT-AM in Houston Wednesday morning that he would not be surprised if Manziel ends up with an NFL career that is similar to the one Tebow had.

“As a college quarterback, he was one of the greatest to ever play, but so was Tim Tebow,” Moon said, according to CBS Houston. “He had a tough time making that transition because he was that same style of quarterback.”

Like NFL.com’s Mike Huguenin, I completely disagree that Manziel and Tebow are the same style quarterback. Tebow used his 240-pound body to pick up crucial first downs in short yardage situations and turn 1st-and-goals into automatic touchdowns. Manziel eludes defenders with his quickness and is a far more capable passer than Tebow ever was.

“You’re talking about taking a guy number one overall in the draft and he’s 5’11,” Moon added. “He didn’t really run that fast at the combine, only about a 4.6 which was closer to a 4.7, so you are talking about a small guy that’s not very fast in an NFL that’s big strong and fast. He likes to run around and make plays and he was able to do that in college. I just don’t know how well that’s going to transition into the National Football League.”

Moon has a point there. A lot of the defenders at the NFL level have speed that is similar to that which Jadeveon Clowney displayed at the NFL Combine. Manziel may not have the same luck getting away from NFL linebackers and defensive ends like he did in college, so that could be an issue.

The difference is Manziel can throw. Tebow’s throwing mechanics are horrible, and that is what ultimately led to an unsuccessful NFL career. If Manziel fails, it will likely be for different reasons.

Browns claim they didn’t interview Johnny Manziel at NFL Combine

Johnny ManzielCleveland Browns head coach Mike Pettine revealed on Monday that the team chose not to interview Johnny Manziel at the NFL Combine last week. Either Pettine is lying, or the Browns are going to great lengths to pretend they have no interest in Manziel.

Teams are allowed 60 interviews at the Combine during which they can speak to players for 15 minutes. The Browns have the fourth overall pick and are obviously in need of a quarterback, so you would think they would have interviewed the top four quarterbacks on their draft board at the very least. Is Manziel not one of the four?

“We didn’t speak to him at the Combine,” Pettine said, according to Mary Kay Cabot of the Northeast Ohio Media Group. “I didn’t personally. He was not part of the formal interviews.”

Many experts believe that Manziel will be taken by either the Houston Texans or Jacksonville Jaguars, who both pick ahead of Cleveland. The Browns, who also hold the No. 26 pick in the first round of the draft, could opt to take a player like wide receiver Sammy Watkins at No. 4 and wait to draft a quarterback like Derek Carr later.

Pettine stressed that the team will have plenty of information on all of its targets before May 8.

“As we evaluate those positions, we’ll make sure that whatever access or interaction we need with that player, we’ll get that done,” he said.

We already know of one team that may favor Carr over Manziel, so I guess it is not impossible. Still, it seems like a smokescreen. The Browns may want other teams to think they didn’t interview Manziel in order to help the former Texas A&M star slip to them at No. 4. Time will tell.

Barry Switzer: Johnny Manziel is an ‘arrogant little prick’ with ‘staggering’ ability

Johnny ManzielLegendary Oklahoma Sooners coach Barry Switzer has never been shy when sharing his opinion on Johnny Manziel or anything else related to football. The three-time national champion coach loves Manziel’s game, but he hates his attitude. He reiterated that during an appearance on CBS Sports Radio’s “The Morning After” show in St. Louis on Wednesday.

“I don’t like Johnny Manziel’s antics,” Switzer said, according to host Tim McKernan. “He’s an arrogant little prick.”

Back in September, Switzer said he wanted to jerk Manziel’s facemask after the way he dismissed Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin on the sidelines. But once he was done insulting Manziel for the way he carries himself, Switzer offered some of the highest praise of Johnny Football’s game that we have heard.

“I’ve never seen a college football quarterback do what he does,” he said. “It’s staggering … he’s the most dominant college football quarterback I’ve seen in a long time.I ‘ve compared Manziel to Michael Jordan and Oscar Robertson. He takes over a game like those guys did.”

Having won three championships at the college level and a Super Bowl with the Dallas Cowboys, Switzer has certainly earned the right to share his opinion. While Ron Jaworski does not think any team should draft Manziel within the first three rounds, Switzer said the Rams would be silly to pass on him at No. 2 overall.

In some cases, arrogance can work in a player’s favor. As long as Manziel continues to show that he is more focused on improving his game living it up, he’s a risk worth taking for several NFL teams.

H/T SI Wire