It’s time to get serious about Johnny Manziel and the Heisman

“Poor ole Texas A&M is going into the big boy conference with a freshman quarterback and are going to get their heads beat in”, said that Texas fan in August.  But no one can say that now.  While Kevin Sumlin and Kliff Kingsbury are rock stars calling plays in visors, comb overs and Ray-Bans and putting offensive game plans together while making it look easy, Johnny Manziel is the lifeblood of the heart that is pumping out serious offensive numbers and wins for the Aggies.

Let’s be honest, Johnny Manziel’s Heisman suppression talk is only due to the “FR” in the class column.  Simply put: no freshman has ever won the Heisman – not Adrian Peterson, not Michael Vick or Herschel Walker, and it’s Manziel’s biggest obstacle to overcome that will prevent him from hoisting the stiff-armed trophy in December.  Voters likely won’t choose him, but he could be invited to New York for the final dance.

But have you actually looked at the numbers he’s putting up week-in and week-out at home and on the road in this conference?  They are the very definition of crooked numbers, something each offense and player strives for every week but usually ends up falling short.  Not Manziel, though.

Here are Manziel’s numbers broken down with two other Heisman Trophy dual-threat quarterback winners – Tim Tebow and Cam Newton in their winning season(s) – along with Colin Klein’s numbers to date. Tebow and Newton’s numbers are pre-bowl game when the award was given out.

Passing Yds

Comp %

Rushing Yds

Total TDs


Johnny Manziel (current)

2,527 yds


922 yds

31 TDs


Johnny Manziel (proj.)

3,370 yds


1,229 yds

41 TDs


Tim Tebow (’07)

3,132 yds


838 yds

51 TDs


Cam Newton (’10)

2,589 yds


1,409 yds

48 TDs


Collin Klein (current)

1,875 yds


698 yds

29 TDs


Collin Klein (proj.)

2,500 yds


930 yds

39 TDs


The one big difference statistically from Tebow, Newton and Manziel are the number of touchdowns.  Newton and Tebow both notched 48 and 51 touchdowns respectively. Manziel can’t there, and he may not get to his projected 41 touchdowns because of Alabama looming next week.

The three favorites at this time are Kansas State’s Colin Klein, Oregon’s Kenjon Barner and AJ McCarron.  Some say these three are the only remaining players who can even win the Heisman.  Manziel has 652 more passing yards and 224 more rushing yards, to go along with two more total touchdowns than Klein. Manziel already makes Klein’s offensive numbers look futile in a conference where offense and quarterback play are at its finest. Of course, Klein is directing the #2 team in the country.

This race could be setting up perfectly for Johnny Manziel with the #1 team in the country on the road.  He beats Alabama, and it will catapult him over McCarron and thrust him right into the heart of the Heisman race.  He loses to Alabama, and we are no longer having this discussion.