Updates from Saturday, July 26
Browns owner Jimmy Haslam commented on Manziel on Saturday, per Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal:
#Browns owner Jimmy Haslam on Manziel: "He made some rookie mistakes. The really great athletes make their news on the field, not off field"— Nate Ulrich (@NateUlrichABJ) July 26, 2014
#Browns owner Jimmy Haslam: "Hopefully Johnny can look at guys like LeBron, Brady, Peyton & Jeter & pattern himself after those guys."— Nate Ulrich (@NateUlrichABJ) July 26, 2014
The former Heisman Trophy winner's comments on Friday show signs of awareness regarding the perception of his offseason transgressions.
"At the end of the day I've made some rookie mistakes," Manziel said, via ESPN.com's Pat McManamon. "There were some things I wish I could have gone back and done a little differently."
Manziel has been spotlighted for his youthful behavior this offseason. According to CBSSports.com's John Breech, the Browns rookie has gone on at least eight trips in the 11 weekends between the 2014 NFL draft and training camp.
A photo of what appears to be the star quarterback rolling up a $20 bill in a bathroom has generated plenty of notoriety. Via CBS Sports' "TBD in the AM" Twitter account:
Johnny Football also commented on his discussions with head coach Mike Pettine and general manager Ray Farmer. Via NFL.com's Dan Hanzus:
Me and coach Pettine and Ray Farmer really talked about a lot of things that transpired over the course of the offseason. The main thing is people within this building, my teammates, the coaching staff, the higher-ups in this organization -- we've all been on the same page, we've all been good and we're very eager to be moving forward.
However, Manziel also maintained his right to enjoy his youth while he prepares for his first season in the NFL.
"I don't think there's anything wrong with me going out and having a nightlife and a social life," Manziel said, per McManamon. "I'm 21 years old and it was the offseason and it's free time for us."
Bleacher Report's own Matt Miller echoed that sentiment:
Why can't we just let Johnny Manziel be 21 years old?— Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) July 25, 2014
Manziel, who's been a nearly constant presence in the media since his redshirt freshman season at Texas A&M, is engaged in a high-profile training camp battle with Brian Hoyer to become the Browns' starting quarterback this season.
According to ESPN's Bob Holtzman, a Browns player believes Hoyer will be the Week 1 starter:
Browns player: "we're all expecting Hoyer to start" week 1. Feeling in locker room is Pettine will announce WELL BEFORE 3rd preseason game— bob holtzman (@BobHoltzmanESPN) July 25, 2014
The media firestorm surrounding Manziel adds an extra level of scrutiny that would prove to be difficult for any rookie quarterback. It's one thing to transition from a spread offense to the highly complicated NFL playbooks, but it's another entity entirely when one is constantly under the microscope on and off the field.
Manziel's ability to extend plays and make big-time throws has Browns fans excited, but he may not be ready to take the reins for the first few games of the season. Hoyer's steady play makes him an excellent stopgap solution should the Browns want the media frenzy to cool before throwing Manziel into the starting role.