If there is anything that we as fans have learned, it is that a Heisman Trophy does not guarantee a superstar NFL career. Thus, even though Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel recently became the very first freshman in the history of the award to take one home as a freshman, the jury is still very much out in terms of his NFL prospects.
Obviously an incredibly mobile signal-caller, Manziel barely checks in at 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds. That is an inch shorter and roughly 15 pounds lighter than superstar Robert Griffin III. RGIII has been called upon to stop running so much for fear of sustaining even more injuries than the torn ACL he suffered at the end of his rookie year with the Redskins.
One NFL general manager who spoke to CBS Sports’ Mike Freeman is not looking at the measuring stick, but rather the game film. From what he sees, Manziel will end up being better than RGIII, Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson, all of whom starred as rookies in 2012.
One general manager said Manziel, the first freshman to win the Heisman, will be better than the current crop of young athletic quarterbacks. He will rival or be better than Robert Griffin III or Andrew Luck or Russell Wilson. This, to me, sounds patently insane. But this general manager was not alone.
Another said almost the same thing. “He could end up being a more accurate passer than any of those three,” said the GM.
Then again, while a general manager serves as one of a team’s final decision-makers, scouts are the ones down in the trenches — and one (who also spoke to Freeman anonymously) was not nearly so high on Johnny Football.
Yet an NFL scout said he thinks Manziel might have a difficult time staying on an NFL roster. He contends that Manziel isn’t as accurate a passer or as good an athete as any of the young star passers like RG3 or Wilson. That scout believes Manziel “has Canada written all over him.”
So either Johnny Manziel could wind up headed to Hawaii for the Pro Bowl or north of the border to sling the pigskin in Canada-land?
If he performs as a redshirt sophomore the way he did as a wily young frosh, the star should be far closer to hanging out in paradise than having to kick it in Winnipeg.