There are those out there who question his character and commitment to the game; others have issue with his size and reckless style of play. Johnny Manziel’s propensity to scramble and improvise has many analysts worried his potential is limited to short-term excitement at the next level—similar to what we’ve seen from Michael Vick’s career.
Though understandable to some degree, Vick comparisons are flawed for a number of reasons.
Most of Manziel’s big plays were not generated by his legs, though he did rush for 30 touchdowns while averaging 6.3 yards per carry during his collegiate career.
Despite notoriously avoiding the safe and conservative check-down plays, Mr. Football still managed to finish No. 1 among the top 20 QB prospects in career completion percentage with a 68.9 percent average while passing for 9.1 yards per attempt. I hope you understand what that stat means.
Not only is he throwing the ball down the field more often than not, but he’s completing a higher rate of passes than any other quarterback in the nation!
This is something Michael Vick could only dream of accomplishing.
Coincidentally, both QBs only played two years of college ball. Vick, however, only completed 56 percent of his throws while averaging nearly half the yards per attempt as Manziel.
Not only was Manziel a better passer than Vick, but he also had nearly twice as many rushing touchdowns along with a significantly better yards-per-carry average than Vick's 5.5 yards per run.
The only superior trait Vick possesses over Manziel is athleticism.
Still, some valid questions about Manziel’s NFL future do linger. Can he read the field consistently without looking to break the pocket? Will his diminutive stature ever survive against the grown men of the NFL?
Despite the fact that Johnny Manziel is considerably undersized for the NFL, he’s still an underrated athlete, equipped with the foot speed to evade would-be tacklers and the wherewithal to avoid direct hits from opponents.
His decision-making, immaturity and smallish frame do add to his risky draft status, but he seems to have certain intangibles that you look for when seeking out your franchise quarterback.
If he goes to a team that understands how to utilize him, I expect this kid to not only thrive but to also prove he has the tools needed to survive over the long haul. His instincts are unparalleled, and his competitive drive should keep him hungry to be the best, just as it has done for undefeated boxer Floyd Mayweather.
For what it’s worth, if I were a team in need of a franchise quarterback, I’d have a hard time passing on Manziel. I’ve never seen anyone do the things on a football field that Johnny Manziel has done in just two years against the most notorious defenses college football has ever seen.
Manziel is clearly not for everyone. Some general managers will openly embrace a character like his, while others will keep him as far away from their franchises as possible.