Apr 15, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Johnny Manziel sits front row to watch the Texas Rangers play against the Seattle Mariners at Globe Life Park in Arlington. The Rangers beat the Mariners 5-0. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
Red flags? What red flags? When Jon Gruden looks at Johnny Manziel, the only color he sees is green.
Green as in “Go draft that guy right now.”
Gruden, who recently had Manziel on his QB Camp show for ESPN, says he would “love to have” the controversial Texas A&M star, comparing Manziel to another football great who was known for his gunslinger ways.
“It takes courage to pull the ball down and reverse field and do some of the crazy things that [Brett] Favre and Manziel do,” Gruden told USA Today. “There’s going to be consequences when sometimes it doesn’t work out. But it takes a tremendous amount of guts and courage to go make a play when there’s nothing there instead of throwing the ball away.”
“Johnny has a lot of magic to him,” Gruden added.
The red flags on Manziel don’t just refer to his sometimes daring on-field style, but also stem from his off-field behavior.
The sideshow atmosphere sometimes surrounding Manziel has reportedly turned off at least one NFL coach. But Manziel’s upside as a playmaker and a gutsy leader could offset any concerns about his “Hollywood” tendencies.
Jon Gruden certainly doesn’t seem concerned about Manziel’s potential for garnering unwanted media attention. Of course, Gruden himself is in the media right now. He might feel differently if he had to put up with that stuff as a coach.
Currently, Manziel is projected to land with the Vikings in a number of mock drafts. Will they really pull the trigger if Manziel is there at #8?