Someone fire up Skip Bayless at ESPN. There’s an opportunity for him to jump on the bandwagon of another highly debated SEC quarterback and further his career in the coming years.
Johnny Manziel made more headlines off the field this past winter and spring than he made on it last fall, but let’s talk about Johnny Manziel, the football player.
The electrifying sophomore has been a lightning rod of debate regarding his ability and how it projects to, you know, the NFL.
Opinions always change and will change throughout a player’s career. But one thing that isn’t changing – Manziel will remain the most debated player in next year’s draft class, if he declares for the 2014 draft.
You thought Tim Tebow was debated exiting college? Well, get ready for Manziel overload, which already adds to your existing fatigue.
Opinions seem to be divided right down the center for Johnny Manziel and his NFL future.
One current NFL general manager even told Mike Freeman of CBSSports.com that Manziel might be better than Robert Griffin III, Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson, three of the best rookie quarterbacks ever. Another GM told Freeman that Manziel could end up being a better passer than any of the spectacular trio.
But not all opinions are pro-Manziel. Two other GMs told Freeman that Manziel is Canada bound, and another added he would have a hard time making an NFL roster.
Manziel has often been compared to former NFL quarterbacks Doug Flutie and Jeff Garcia, as both were “sandlot” style performers.
NFL.com’s Bucky Brooks thinks Manziel is a sexy college player, but because of a lack of arm strength, he doesn’t project well in the NFL. Some say he’s too small at 6-1, and regardless of arm strength, he’s just too short to be an effective NFL passer. Try telling the 5-11 Russell Wilson that.
With just one season in College Station, the sample size just isn’t there to make an accurate decision.
I’ve contended that Manziel will improve as a player in 2013, but he may not have the spectacular plays, highlights or numbers to go along with it.
If you look at his film from last season, he was such a raw player with unpolished passing skills, living on nothing more than pure explosiveness – and it was explosive. This year, he should improve as a passer, and this spring he showed added arm strength.
Manziel may not combine for 5,116 yards and 47 touchdowns again, but his dedication to continuing to develop his game seems relentless, regardless of his Twitter account or party pics.
Let’s not forget that Manziel is just 20 years old, and his game is now just evolving and beginning to scratch the surface of the future player he’ll become.
The continual evolution and evaluation of Johnny Football’s ability will continue to be one attractive and bewitching storyline.
Photo Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports