If you’re an NFL team looking for a quarterback in the upcoming 2014 NFL Draft, you have to do your due diligence and take a long hard look at former Texas A&M quarterback, Johnny Manziel. You may or may not like what you see, but you have to take that look.
The polarizing figure has analysts split by as wide a margin on his ability has he had fans split on his off-field nonsense during his two seasons with the Aggies.
If you listen to some of the draftniks, Manziel has a chance at supplanting Jadeveon Clowney as the number one overall pick, while some who look at quarterbacks for a living (such as ESPN’s Ron Jaworski) seem to believe that Manziel could fall as low as the third round.
So which is closer to the truth?
Your guess is as good as anyone’s to be honest. Manziel has a very specific skill set that may be difficult to translate into NFL play, but he also has a certain something–call it that will to win–that cannot be denied.
Manziel may very well end up being another Tim Tebow, leaving college as one of the best to ever play the game, but just not suited for the NFL, but that doesn’t mean using a high draft pick to take Manziel is necessarily a bad idea. Teams that are in desperate need of a quarterback may do well to roll the dice.
This isn’t the old days when teams not only potentially wasted a draft pick on a could-be franchise quarterback, but also risked losing millions of dollars towards their salary cap. With the rookie cap numbers in the current CBA, it makes that second risk almost non-existent. So why not take a shot at a guy who at least has a 50/50 chance of being better than what you have now?
Teams such as the Cleveland Browns, Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars and Oakland Raiders may end up giving a huge facepalm if they pass up on Manziel. In particular, Houston has to be very cautious about letting Manziel slip down to the Jaguars, who play in their same division. If by some chance Johnny Football does find his game in the NFL, that could seriously come back to haunt the Texans.
Manziel is far from being a sure thing with so many questions surrounding his accuracy, ability to read defenses, and work in the pocket, but he’s also not a bad bet if you consider what you could be getting.