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Jon Gruden comes away impressed after Manziel sit-down

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ESPN loves to embrace debate, and now they’ve got two of their most prominent football analysts engaged in a public debate over the most-discussed prospect in this year’s NFL draft.

A day after Ron Jaworski made news by saying he wouldn’t draft Johnny Manziel in the first three rounds, ESPN announced that it is bringing back its much-discussed Jon Gruden QB Camp feature. Unsurprisingly, the first quarterback to participate is Manziel, the former Texas A&M Heisman Trophy winner. And Gruden liked what he saw when the two of them sat down.

“In the right system, with the right support, I really think he can be a success,” Gruden said.

Portions of Gruden’s conversation with Manziel will air on SportsCenter today at 6 p.m. Eastern. That will lead to a new round of debate about how Manziel comes across, whether he carries himself like a professional quarterback, and so on. And ESPN will eat the attention up.

Of course, you can point out that by writing about Gruden’s QB Camp, I’m helping to give ESPN exactly the kind of attention it wants for its contrived quarterback debates. But it should also be pointed out that Gruden’s QB Camp is a well-done feature that really does provide solid insight into the quarterbacks who will be available in the upcoming draft. And Gruden’s conversation with Manziel will surely be worth watching.

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42 Responses to “Jon Gruden comes away impressed after Manziel sit-down”
  1. niko0063 says: Feb 27, 2014 3:57 PM

    Jon Gruden is impressed with Air Bud

  2. thestrategyexpert says: Feb 27, 2014 3:58 PM

    I wouldn’t miss an episode of that show. And I agree with Gruden on this one.

  3. tonyugoh says: Feb 27, 2014 3:59 PM


  4. The Great Ted Thompson the Genius says: Feb 27, 2014 3:59 PM

    “In the right system, with the right support, I really think he can be a success.”

    That’s not the kind of quote you want to hear when you’re picking a guy in the top five. He could say the same thing about Jimmy Garoppolo.

  5. slbasegame257 says: Feb 27, 2014 4:01 PM

    If anybody’s opinion on QBs should carry the most weight it’s Gruden’s. He was just about the only guy who said that Russell Wilson would have a good career.

  6. shaggytoodle says: Feb 27, 2014 4:02 PM

    Anyone can be a success in the right system and right support.

    Wilson smart QB that doesn’t cost his team games, great support and system.

    Just look at how much Alex Smith has grown the past 4 seasons with better coaching.

    Why do you think the Browns haven’t found a franchise QB since retuning to the NFL? No support, bad system.

  7. thestrategyexpert says: Feb 27, 2014 4:05 PM

    Umm pardon me but I spoke highly about Russell Wilson as well, and I did it without even having to be paid to do it for a living. I figured that out on my free time.

  8. suckleague says: Feb 27, 2014 4:06 PM

    i.e., not the Raiders

  9. ✦ Pittsburgh is the City of Champions ✦ says: Feb 27, 2014 4:06 PM

    How can you not be impressed by Air Bud?

  10. roxtar10 says: Feb 27, 2014 4:07 PM

    Sorry – Gruden loves everyone. This carries no weight at all.

  11. amanistumor says: Feb 27, 2014 4:07 PM

    I’d rather watch Frank Caliendo interview these QB prospects.

  12. pillowporkers says: Feb 27, 2014 4:08 PM

    ^insert josh gordon

  13. zimaman says: Feb 27, 2014 4:13 PM

    you gotta love ESPN they steal right from the WWE playbook of Vince McMahon. one guy says he is not even a third rounder and the other guy falls head over heels with him and thinks he is a cant miss. when there is no story make up a controversy. sure fire way to sell tickets and make money. they should drive down to Stamford, Ct from Bristol, CT and pay him a royalty check. like Vince need the money ….right?

  14. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Feb 27, 2014 4:13 PM

    I agree with Gruden about Manziel and put more stock in his opinion than the out dated Jaws who played 80 years ago or something.

  15. schmitty2 says: Feb 27, 2014 4:14 PM

    “Let me tell you about this Manziel kid..he can do it all on the field- ability to adapt, elude the passrush, make the pressure throws. Off the field he is an equally gifted partier-beer pong, shots, you name it. And whats impressive is he was doing this before he was of legal drinking age. The Texans would be crazy to not draft this kid!”

    Jon Gruden

  16. shaggytoodle says: Feb 27, 2014 4:15 PM

    Joe Flacco and Dilfer won SB cuz they were in the right system.

  17. freevinnycurry says: Feb 27, 2014 4:20 PM

    Jon Gruden’s QB segments on ESPN before the draft are comical. This guy loves everybody.

  18. jdbaker01 says: Feb 27, 2014 4:30 PM

    – “much-discussed Jon Gruden QB Camp feature”

    The only discussion I’ve ever heard of his QB Camp feature is disbelief that it’s still on.

  19. thraiderskin says: Feb 27, 2014 4:30 PM

    What Gruden said was a non-comment about Johnnie Manziel.

  20. prideof10000lakes says: Feb 27, 2014 4:38 PM

    Jon gruden could even find a good thing to say about Christian ponder.

  21. spartyownsyou says: Feb 27, 2014 4:46 PM

    Gruden and Jaws are both Delta Bravos. Jaws doesn’t even believe what he said about Manziel he just said it to attract attention and low and behold it attracted lots of attention.
    It’s almost impossible to take 99% of these talking heads seriously anymore when all they’re trying to do is talk the loudest and say the most controversial things just so they’ll be noticed and talked about. Most of these guys make me sick to my stomach and I refuse to listen to them.

  22. qdog112 says: Feb 27, 2014 4:52 PM

    I bet Gruden’s impressed. He’s not the GM who will get fired for drafting him.

  23. seatownballers says: Feb 27, 2014 4:53 PM

    Cleveland won’t flinch, they’re drafting him. Evans Lee Benjamin with the other first rounder. Manziel would have a chance if they do that. Don’t look past who they draft at running back too

  24. shogunassasin30 says: Feb 27, 2014 4:56 PM

    I think people who don’t know, will be extremely surprised at how well spoken and intelligent Manziel is. I was actually really impressed by him when he hung out on the ESPN set all day for the national championship game.

  25. brimab says: Feb 27, 2014 4:57 PM

    What the hell did you expect Gruden to say?
    Has he ever publicly said anything negative about anyone who wasn’t a referee?

  26. somethingsmellsrotten says: Feb 27, 2014 5:03 PM

    This guy Gruden loves everyone…this guy.

  27. jpk6044 says: Feb 27, 2014 5:05 PM

    Same thing Gruden said about every quarterback ever.

  28. tdsbepoppin says: Feb 27, 2014 5:28 PM

    Isn’t embracing debate what it’s all about? Why would you want to hear from a bunch of guys with the exact same opinion? Sad how often you guys are constantly taking shots at other media outlets.

  29. taskforcefreddy says: Feb 27, 2014 5:32 PM

    Sounds legit to me. After all, Gruden said the same thing about Blaine Gabbert and Christian Ponder and look how well they’re doing.

  30. pantherpro says: Feb 27, 2014 5:47 PM

    Raiders still suck Chuckie. Best move of your life!

  31. chargerdillon says: Feb 27, 2014 6:02 PM

    The big red flag nobody wants to address is that he should have been suspended for all of last season. But because he was such a large part of the college football marketing campaign they gave him half a game……HALF A GAME!!!!!

    This kid has discipline issues screaming all over his face. When you get quarterbacks who are not disciplined you end up drafting guys like Jamarcus Russell, Ryan Leaf, and Michael Vick.

    Pure talent only gets you so far, if you don’t have the discipline the best you’ll ever make in the NFL is mediocre.

  32. Ed Bandell says: Feb 27, 2014 6:05 PM

    In the right system with the right support, I could really be a success too.

    Isn’t part of being a QB making those players around you better? Not the other way around.

    You can never be sure of anyone until they actually play for a bit in the NFL. We’ve seen 6th rounders go on to have Hall of Fame careers (Brady) and we’ve seen “The Next Joe Montana” flop hard and bust (Rick Mirer). If it was a perfect science there would be no term “bust.” Well, at least not in this context.

  33. melikefootball says: Feb 27, 2014 6:06 PM

    Who isn’t Gruden impressed with that goes to his camp.

  34. dtlb58 says: Feb 27, 2014 6:28 PM

    Yeah, because Gruden drafted such great talented QB ‘s when he was a coach!
    He will be the first guy to say that the reason he isn’t coaching today is because he couldn’t draft a QB. The guy sucks
    at evaluating the position.

  35. pacodawg says: Feb 27, 2014 6:51 PM

    Gruden liked Branden weedon. How did that work out?

  36. djshnooks says: Feb 27, 2014 6:52 PM

    I think Jon Gruden is a little overrated himself…but I do love his QB show.

  37. gbmickey says: Feb 27, 2014 8:04 PM

    Not much middle of the ground opinion on him either like you him or you don’t. This will be interesting in how this all turns out. Some GM will have his career decided by this one single pick.

  38. pftstory says: Feb 27, 2014 8:39 PM

    He knows his QB’s because he was impressed with R Wilson?

    Tell me the QB he was not impressed with, then I’ll consider this news. I’ll really pay attention if you can find a QB most people liked that he said didn’t have it.

    I’ll really impress you when I put $2 on each horse in the Kentucy Derby, then show you the winning ticket after the race.

  39. dwhcic says: Feb 27, 2014 8:49 PM

    That guy (every NFL player I ever talk about) is one of the best in the game!

    -Jon Gruden

  40. thereyougo2 says: Feb 27, 2014 9:10 PM

    I like Jaws opinion although at three or four you be wasting a pick.

  41. pacificajim says: Feb 28, 2014 1:27 AM

    Jon Gruden would “come away impressed” after a sit down with a tree stump. Nothing to see here, move along.

  42. ytownjoe says: Feb 28, 2014 10:05 PM

    Gruden loves every quarterback he ever saw.

    Jaws is the better judge.

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