In Cleveland, the Johnny Manziel Experiment Is Over. It Failed.

ESPN — Johnny Manziel‘s time with the Cleveland Browns will come to an end in March, according to a league source.

The Browns released a statement from new director of football operations Sashi Brown on Tuesday that expressed disappointment in Manziel but stopped short of saying the quarterback’s run in Cleveland is over.

The reference to league rules points to the fact that the Browns do not have the salary cap space to release Manziel on Feb. 8, the day after the Super Bowl and the first day they can do so. The move will take place when the new NFL year starts March 9, according to the source.

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Easy to take shots at a guy when he’s down, but we ain’t gonna do that. Truthfully, I think Manziel has some deeply-rooted, dangerous personal issues that manifested themselves throughout his illustrious amateur career. They haven’t gotten better with his time in Cleveland and, if they don’t improve soon, could likely present perpetual problems for Manziel. That’s sad and we all hope he gets some meaningful help.

Now that that’s out of the way, we can say that Manziel absolutely sucked as a professional quarterback. Sure, he wasn’t awful on the field. He was exciting to watch, made some good plays and showed some serious potential with his ability to keep plays alive and move the ball downfield. And everyone knows the Browns are terrible, so even his bad performances were perceived more as “well he’s got no help” than “well he’s got no place here.”

But being an NFL quarterback is about way, way more than showcasing potential on the field. It’s about living and breathing the job. It’s about watching film to the point where you dream in bird’s eye view of defense coverages and call out audibles in your sleep.

Tom Brady, for example, is already doing two-a-days.

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Manziel, on the other hand, has been in and out of rehab, has been suspended multiple times for “extracurricular involvement” (as we’ll call it), and is now under investigation by the league for something that’s being whispered as domestic violence with his girlfriend. It’s unacceptable at the professional level and, as of March 9th, will land Manziel out of a job.

The good news? A different team will pick Johnny up. It may be Dallas, it may be Houston, it may be someone else. No one knows. But let us hope, for Manziel and for our relentless appetite for watching magical players play sports at the highest level, he resolves his issues, applies himself fully and thrives in a new program.


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