Dear Johnny Football: We Know You Won't...But Just One More Year?

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Dear Johnny Football: We Know You Won't...But Just One More Year?
USA Today

Dear Johnny Manziel,

It's been a roller-coaster ride for you. We get it.

Playing college football at Texas A&M with all of the outside pressures generated from winning the 2012 Heisman Trophy, becoming a full-fledged celebrity, being investigated by the NCAA for your mass autograph signings and carrying a team that plays little to no defense would be enough to break many men.

It hasn't broken you. In fact, it's made you better.

All you've done is throw for 3,313 yards, 31 touchdowns, rush for 611 yards and eight touchdowns, and make plays like this in the process.

And this...


And this...

Johnny Manziel game-tying TD vs. Ole Miss

And fight through a shoulder injury to lead your team downfield to take the lead against Auburn before your defense let you down.

That's just it, though. Your defense won't let you down forever.

You've got the fourth-ranked recruiting class in the composite joining you next season, which includes nine defensive players who have four or more stars attached to their names. As long as those players stay committed and the ones currently on campus don't leave, your defense shouldn't let you down as much next year as it has in 2013.

The lure of the NFL is too much to overcome for most players. But you're a legend. A video-game cheat code. A polarizing and mesmerizing figure who has forever changed college football.

Change it again, and stick around for your redshirt junior season in 2014.

Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Do you really want to go to the NFL next year?

Sure, dual-threat quarterbacks like Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson have chipped away at the notion that quarterbacks can't run at the game's highest level. But those guys aren't Johnny Football.

You're unique. You're different. Your coach, Kevin Sumlin, embraces your reckless nature on the field. In the NFL, they'll want you to suppress it.

But that's not you. You're reckless on the field and off. You lob up prayers that your guys come down with. You take chances. You send out tweets in fits of rage in the middle of the night saying you want to get out of College Station.

That's you. That's Johnny Football.

Scott Halleran/Getty Images

The NFL is only beginning to understand how to use players who possess skills similar to yours. It needs more time, but you don't. 

It doesn't want Johnny Football; it wants Johnny Manziel.

But you are Johnny Football. Your personality off the field makes you who you are on it and vice versa.

Scott Halleran/Getty Images

The money can wait.

Your family has money, as's Timothy Burke chronicled this summer. So, enjoy college. Enjoy College Station and being Johnny Football, because up there, they'll change you—on the field and off. 

Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Don't be that guy. Be you.

Besides, imagine the legacy you could cement for yourself if you're able to lead the Aggies to a national title in the first season of the College Football Playoff and win your second—or perhaps third—Heisman Trophy.

The CFP is designed to be a spectacle, and that's exactly what you are, for better or worse, with a Heisman Trophy (or more) in tow.

This letter won't resonate with you. I get that. You want the next challenge. 

But nothing you do is ordinary. You're extraordinary.

Do something extraordinary and give us one more year of fun.

Signed (for free, of course),

Barrett Sallee

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