Johnny Manziel. Aka, Johnny Football.
The former Texas high school and college football standout is back in a new Netflix documentary titled “Untold: Johnny Football.” Manziel was always an eccentric figure who grabbed headlines at every level of the game. From making mesmerizing plays for Tivy High School in Kerrville, TX, to winning the Heisman Trophy while attending Texas A&M, Johnny Football looked to have the personality and star power to make it at the next level. His size and commitment were always in question, and now we know why. In the documentary, Manziel claims he watched zero game film while playing for the Cleveland Browns, who drafted him in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft.
It’s one thing to be smaller and not as talented as other guys on the field, but if you’re not willing to put in the work, it’s nearly impossible to last long in the NFL or any professional sports league. At the most important position in football, winging it doesn’t get the job done once you leave college. Most successful NFL quarterbacks watch tons of film each week of the season and even during the offseason.
Hearing this, it’s no surprise Manziel only lasted two years in the league and then disappeared without a trace. Not too long ago, everyone was losing it and in shock at the fact that Kyler Murray was accused of not studying enough during the week. Former Browns tackle new Hall of Fame inductee Joe Thomas was on Dan Patrick’s show Wednesday morning and said he realized Johnny wasn’t going to pan out after he skipped OTA’s his rookie year.
Whenever Manziel was on the field, there was always that feeling that he could pop off on a big play at any moment. During Thomas’s interview with Patrick, he said Manziel played “backyard football,” which is absolutely true. You can get away with that in high school and even college, to an extent. But once you hit the NFL, all that goes out the window, and structure rules the day. There’s room to improvise, but that can’t be the only tool in your bag. Your entire game plan as a player can’t be to wing it in every aspect of your career. That mindset led to Johnny Football’s extremely short stint in the league.
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