Johnny Manziel Will Have Strong Year Despite Drama-Filled Offseason

Benjamin KleinContributor IIIJuly 28, 2013

Jul 17, 2013; Hoover, AL, USA; Texas A&M Aggies quarterback Johnny Manziel talks with the media during the 2013 SEC football media days at the Hyatt Regency. Mandatory Credit: Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports
Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been a wild couple of months for 2012 Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel.

Since throwing for 3,706 yards and 26 touchdowns, running for 1,410 yards and 21 touchdowns and leading Texas A&M to a Cotton Bowl victory over Oklahoma, the spotlight has been all over the dynamic quarterback—and not necessarily for good reasons, either.

Manziel was the star of a University of Texas fraternity party over the weekend but was kicked out, according to ESPN. The report also notes how the quarterback was spotted wearing a Tim Tebow jersey at another party and departed early from the Manning Passing Academy a few weeks ago.

Earlier in the summer, Manziel took his frustrations about Texas A&M to Twitter, saying, "Bulls--- like tonight is a reason why I can’t wait to leave college station…whenever it may be,” per the report. ESPN also notes how he agreed to a plea deal on misdemeanor charges from a 2012 arrest.

Needless to say, the last few months haven’t been too fun for the star.

Still, while Manziel probably has done some things that he shouldn't have this summer, let’s not forget about what this kid can do on a football field. He might not be the best example yet for young players off the field, but there’s a lot to like when he has a football in his hands.

Manziel says that winning is all that should matter:

As long as Manziel is going to be the starting quarterback for Texas A&M in the upcoming season, he’s going to be more than fine. 

B/R’s Randy Chambers recently predicted that Texas A&M would be the fourth-highest team in the AP Preseason Poll, and there's no doubt the Aggies would be much further down on the list without Manziel on the roster. The program only has a couple of tough tests on its schedule for next season, and the Aggies could end up undefeated.

Every college football fan in the country is going to be watching Manziel take snaps against the defending champion Crimson Tide on Sept. 14 in College Station. The Aggies were the only team in 2012 to top Alabama, as the quarterback accounted for two touchdowns in a five-point victory.

If Manziel can help Texas A&M escape the wrath of Alabama again this season, there’s a very strong chance that the Aggies could be playing in the BCS National Championship Game. And he could have the chance to win back-to-back Heismans—which hasn’t been done since Archie Griffin did it in 1974 and 1975.

There have been plenty of players in the past who couldn't succeed while being in the headlines of every newspaper in the country each day. Manziel may not be a perfect angel, but we need to pay attention to what he does on the field instead of what he does off of it. 

Manziel hasn't done anything this summer that would put his career in serious jeopardy. As long as he doesn't do anything that would affect his playing time or performance, he should have no trouble thriving on the field.

Manziel is bound to have another Heisman-worthy season in 2013, whether he’s going to parties in Austin or Gainesville or Tuscaloosa. Manziel can wear a Tebow jersey or a Brady jersey or a Rodgers jersey and still take the Aggies to a BCS game. He’s one of the top players in the country.

No matter what he does on his own time in the offseason, he's still going to be a star come game time.