Skip to content

Emmitt expresses concern for Manziel’s “short career lifestyle”

Getty Images

As the Browns continue to have no concerns about quarterback Johnny Manziel’s off-field antics, plenty of folks connected to the sport do.

Enter Hall of Fame running back Emmitt Smith, who knows a thing or two about working hard and playing harder; he was a member of the notorious Cowboys of the 1990s.

“That lifestyle is going to be a short lifestyle — a short career lifestyle — if he continues that,” Smith told Shan & RJ of 105.3 The Fan Dallas/Ft. Worth on Tuesday. “As we used to say, you can’t keep burning the candle at both ends of the stick.  The candle gets small fairly quick.  Johnny is going to have to figure it out.”

Manziel has made no secret of his decision to drink champagne and/or to spray it on strangers in clubs.

“Hopefully he’s not doing anything to hurt himself outside of drinking — which is going to harm his body and harm his performance anyway,” Smith said.  (Max McGee doesn’t know what Smith is talking about.)  “At the end of the day, he’s going to have to learn manage those things.”

Emmitt was never linked to the White House antics of the Boys Will Be Boys Cowboys, who partied very hard in an era before cell phones and social media.  Still, Emmitt admits that he had some growing up to do after entering the league.

“Johnny is young,” Smith said.  “I was young and dumb myself at one point in time.  But maturity itself, and maturing as a professional athlete, is something that is required of every pro football player.  I think right now Johnny Manziel is going to get a glimpse of what negative press can do for you.  A lot of people think negative press is good press — or any press is good press.  It’s not.”

He’s right.  While the coaching staff and front office seem to have no issue with the negative press, at least one teammate (cornerback Joe Haden) has suggested that Manziel tone it down.  If others in the locker room feel the same way, it could be hard for Manziel to rally the kind of internal support he needs to be an effective starter.  Or a starter at all.

Permalink 72 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, Rumor Mill, Top Stories
72 Responses to “Emmitt expresses concern for Manziel’s “short career lifestyle””
  1. hodous says: Jun 24, 2014 1:13 PM


  2. thepftpoet says: Jun 24, 2014 1:16 PM

    While Johnny Manziel is out partying and being unprofessional.

    Teddy Bridgewater is out studying his playbook hard & getting ready to be a face of the franchise.

    I think we all know which Quarterback will be more successful.

    Work Ethic + Talent + Professionalism = success.

    And Teddy Bridgewater has it all.

  3. psly2124 says: Jun 24, 2014 1:17 PM

    Why do these retired players need to stay in the limelight. Emmitt your career ended about 15 years ago. You have never met Johnny football. It yet you are going to tell him how to live. Can your ego get any bigger. Shut up an go out to pasture already. The sooner the better. Emmitt must be setting up for a Jim brown like comeback. Brown had Franco and enmity will go against, who cares.

  4. dumbpollack says: Jun 24, 2014 1:18 PM

    Unfortunately for us Browns fans he’ll flame out like all the rest. We haven’t had a good QB since Bernie freakin’ Kosar! Why did my old man get me hooked on this team so many years ago!?!!

  5. imbetteratlifethanyou says: Jun 24, 2014 1:21 PM

    the vikings are garbage.


  6. bassplucker says: Jun 24, 2014 1:23 PM

    Do not like the Cowboys, but always loved Emmitt. He was one tough hombre.

  7. grantsbuds says: Jun 24, 2014 1:23 PM

    The ‘lifestyle’ did wonders for the most overrated WR in the HOF,….namely Irvin.

  8. blackstrat says: Jun 24, 2014 1:24 PM

    Max McGee would have been a better player had he not drank routinely the night before games.
    He was not even a starter except for injuries to the starter.

  9. thestrategyexpert says: Jun 24, 2014 1:24 PM

    I think he raises some good points, but let’s see what McNabb says to make sure.

  10. britishteeth says: Jun 24, 2014 1:27 PM

    “As we used to say, you can’t keep burning the candle at both ends of the stick.

    Why do football players continually butcher cliches?
    Dammitt Emmitt.

  11. brownsmakemecrazy says: Jun 24, 2014 1:29 PM

    Johnny gives the media something to talk about but I totally agree with Emmitt Smith. Hopefully he gets it out of his system quickly. I don’t think his game will translate to the NFL. Hope I’m wrong but I don’t see him being successful long term. Hope for the Browns sake and fans sake he is successful

  12. unbiasednflfan says: Jun 24, 2014 1:31 PM

    Johnny = show, Teddy = substance

  13. msc4realeagles says: Jun 24, 2014 1:31 PM

    He also fears Mr. Manziel could get “Debacled”.

  14. flaccoishermanmunster says: Jun 24, 2014 1:32 PM

    Good advice emmitt….from a common sense standpoint. But history shows us, these type of characters are usually pretty good. Damn shame, but true.

  15. iloveagoodnap says: Jun 24, 2014 1:35 PM


    The show goes on as scheduled in Cleveland.

  16. campcouch says: Jun 24, 2014 1:35 PM

    Ah the old “I was young and dumb too” line. And I’m sure he didn’t appreciate some other guy’s sage advice at that time either. Joe Namath,Jim McMahon,Deion Sanders and many like them are considered characters in NFL lore. Partied hard and made fools of themselves,but they’re thought of fondly. players around the league do commercials,SNL,visit Brazil,guest appearances on TV and vacation in Europe,far from spending 24 hours a day 7 days a week perfecting their craft,but some guy has to bring up someone they don’t know because he’s not fitting in to his current view of life.

  17. csbanter says: Jun 24, 2014 1:38 PM

    Manziel is going to be alright. Emmitt is not being a bad guy for stating the obvious. If Manziel doesn’t take care of himself his NFL career will be short. Had these words come from a “bum” former player it would be another story.

  18. t500000t says: Jun 24, 2014 1:38 PM

    So sick and tired of hearing about what Manziel does in his spare time. It’s what he does on the field I am most concerned about.
    I’m not even a Browns, fan but I hope Manziel tears it up. I think Hoyer will start, and I’m not looking for him to fail, but I want to see what Johnny Football is all about when it really counts–on the field.

  19. scrp2 says: Jun 24, 2014 1:39 PM

    As the interview continued onto other topics, Emmitt commented that the Cowboys will be 8-8 this year.

  20. chinahand11 says: Jun 24, 2014 1:39 PM

    I really believe there is too much of a media build-up on Johnny’s behavior. What weirdness has he done since Vegas? Well it IS a story you can keep doing reruns on.

  21. surfinbird1 says: Jun 24, 2014 1:40 PM

    It’s 81 degrees in Minneapolis and little Teddy wants somebody to get him a sweater.

  22. bigbwoy000 says: Jun 24, 2014 1:42 PM

    Love the Max McGee reference. Joe Namath would be another exception to the rule.

  23. bengaliballer says: Jun 24, 2014 1:46 PM

    Emmitt was a terrible TV analyst, but ever since he got the boot from TV I swear his quotes have been more articulate and spot on… weird.

  24. theravenmaniac says: Jun 24, 2014 1:49 PM

    Johnny just ignore everyone and go drink to your hearts content. Take Ben and raggedy Andy with you for some Saturday nights on the town!!!!

  25. justintuckrule says: Jun 24, 2014 1:52 PM

    I’m pulling for JF. He’s one of like 3 players in the league that’s not a stiff bore.

  26. natureboy704 says: Jun 24, 2014 2:01 PM

    The media gets way to involved in these guys lives, they aren’t super hero’s or robots they are normal people just like us they are just better at running around with a pig skin, manziel is what 21 years old and a millionaire, what do you expect him to be doing? He is going to clubs and party’s, the same thing I do on the weekend as a 23 year old with a good steady pay check, let them live and stop monitoring their every move

  27. scoonie97 says: Jun 24, 2014 2:03 PM

    “I was young and dumb myself at one point in time.”

    Oh Emmitt… it wasn’t just you being young.

  28. usedjock says: Jun 24, 2014 2:05 PM

    I agree with Emmitt because he knows what it takes to have a tremendous and long career. He has without a doubt seen first hand how hard partying his team mates were in Dallas, and how some of them had short careers because of it.
    My thinking is that Manziel is going to have to work that much harder because the team he is on hasn’t been the best and maybe he needs to start thinking about partying later and getting to work.

  29. kelvinmays says: Jun 24, 2014 2:06 PM

    For all of you non atheletes that never played the game but always manage to coach from the couch, what he does off the field could keep him off the field. Ask Mr. Hernandez if thats a true statement.

  30. b3nz0z says: Jun 24, 2014 2:11 PM

    there’s only a tiny window for having the fun Johnny’s having in life. use protection and a designated driver, don’t break any laws, and enjoy your life.

  31. vertekal says: Jun 24, 2014 2:13 PM

    Wow the guy just became old enough to drink legally and got the payday of a lifetime .. of course he’s going to celebrate. People talk like he’s been hanging out with Lindsay Lohan.

  32. mousietongue says: Jun 24, 2014 2:14 PM

    Never liked the Cowboys but met Emmitt at
    a business function and the guy couldn’t have been any nicer to everyone. Class act.

  33. bigcid10 says: Jun 24, 2014 2:19 PM

    just hope that he becomes the starter and then Pittsburgh can take him out in the first game,then you won’t have anything to worry about

  34. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Jun 24, 2014 2:20 PM

    Did Emmitt ever offer this advice to teammate Michael Irvin?

  35. weepingjebus says: Jun 24, 2014 2:27 PM

    So you’re saying not a lot of HOFers got drunk on inflatable swans? Given what I know of the 1960s I find that hard to believe.

  36. floreskins says: Jun 24, 2014 2:27 PM

    So sick of this self-righteous nonsense. Emmitt watched idly by while Irvin, Lett, Nate Newton and the rest of the Cowboy felons went onto to Hall of Fame careers. If the kid starts to miss meetings and hurts himself and the team because he and 3 smokeshow girls tripped drunkenly out by the pool in Vegas then you can get all high and mighty. Until then let the kid live his life.

  37. qdog112 says: Jun 24, 2014 2:33 PM

    Name one player who was ever hurt by excessive public, even private drinking and partying. I double dare you.

    Anyway, Johnny is different. He’s Johnny Football, after all. Those other drunks don’t have a sport named after them.

    Meanwhile, the Browns are in spin control denial and Johnny, who just woke up, is hitting one to smooth things out from last night.

    Party on dude!!!

  38. 202folife says: Jun 24, 2014 2:35 PM

    I was looking for Emmit to say Johnny’s gonna get blow’d up!

  39. anothervoiceofreason says: Jun 24, 2014 2:36 PM

    One of the points in the article that should be emphasized is that this isn’t the 90’s anymore, when the Cowboys’ partying was legendary….stories were relayed, gossip was spread, but their antics weren’t on display daily for anyone with a web browser to view. Camera phones, social media, and relentless paparazzi salivating over the next potential scandal will inevitably contribute to the demise of any “larger than life” personality.

    Those NFL players who party just as hard (or harder) but are smart about it are the ones who do so mostly among their trusted friends who don’t snap photos and tweet details about their buddy, simply out of respect for the potential backlash over his image. Gotta wonder if JF has many true friends like that.

  40. thereisfootballwestofjersey says: Jun 24, 2014 2:42 PM

    Johnny Football’s shenanigans can’t be any worse than the 1990s Dallas Cowboys White House can they Emmitt?

    What about after Irvin found Jesus then got pulled over 4 speeding? They found a marijuana pipe which he claimed was his brother in law’s?


  41. nite2al says: Jun 24, 2014 2:47 PM

    How are you people blaming Emmitt for what his teammates did? Like M. Irvin would really take advice from a younger player? LOL.

    Emmitt is speaking from seeing these things first hand!

  42. aa1829 says: Jun 24, 2014 2:52 PM

    Max McGee is dead, so ya, he probably doesn’t know what Smith is talking about. Max died falling off of his roof.

  43. citizenstrange says: Jun 24, 2014 2:55 PM

    “My candle burns at both ends;
    It will not last the night;
    But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends—
    It gives a lovely light!”
    — Edna St. Vincent Millay

  44. notthetroll says: Jun 24, 2014 3:00 PM

    Who cares about Manziels partying? If he fails and people use that as an excuse we have a story. I think he fails on his size, play style, dedication. The knock on him in college was he didn’t know everything about the playbook.
    -insert college iz hard! comments below. A&M might be in Texas but it’s not Rice.

  45. thefiesty1 says: Jun 24, 2014 3:07 PM

    Manzel will flame out in a year or two just like all the previous QB’s in Cleveland. Taking Emmitt’s advice won’t matter in this case.

  46. swortybounce says: Jun 24, 2014 3:15 PM

    If he can flip the switch every game day, there won’t be too many people who care.

    The ball is in his field.

  47. rcali says: Jun 24, 2014 3:21 PM

    He can’t hear you!

  48. jgedgar70 says: Jun 24, 2014 3:23 PM

    Emmitt’s comments aren’t really off-base, but I don’t think it’s that big a deal right now. A lot of scientific study has revealed that the human brain isn’t 100% developed until about age 25, and the last section to develop is the one that controls impulsive behavior. That’s why just about every human being on Earth can tell “I was young and dumb” stories from when they were 18-25. If Johnny is slow to figure this out, he’ll figure it out when he gets pulverized in a few games. Most of us do dumb stuff at that age, but eventually we mature. I don’t see anything that convinces me that Johnny won’t mature eventually like the rest of us.

  49. mayfieldroadboy says: Jun 24, 2014 3:24 PM

    “Manziel has made no secret of his decision to drink champagne…”

    Has it ever been reported that JF was staggering, swaying as he walked, or plain-ol’ drunk? These shadows of football players seem to find a glimmer of life in their jealous rants about other/rookie players.

    JF has not yet been deemed a football player: never played a professional down, neither threw an interception against an opposing team nor took a sack, fumbled, or got blown up by a blitzing linebacker.

    What is the fine line between jealousy and hate/contempt?

    Happy you’re here, Jonny.

  50. metalhead65 says: Jun 24, 2014 3:46 PM

    amazing how so many people feel the need to use manziel’s name to get some free publicity. I was just asking some friends the other day I wonder what emmit thinks of Johnny Football? seriously enough is enough already! apparently nobody watched what he did on the field last year because after he won the heisman and enjoyed the benefits that came with it for which he was derided for, he went out and had a better season last year. so much for that affecting him on the field. yes the pros are different but the point is he did not let the off field stuff affect his performance. once camp starts and he misses meetings or time on the field over being a 21 year old kid breaking no laws then you can say what you want until then just stop!

  51. ilovecostcobut says: Jun 24, 2014 3:49 PM

    That said, Johnny Football might turn out to be more Max McGee than E. Smith. Emmitt knows Emmitt

  52. nyking1963 says: Jun 24, 2014 3:51 PM

    Let’s take a look at the most successful QB’s in the NFL and think about how many of them do you see doing the things Manziel is doing off the field.
    Manning? No
    Brees? No
    Brady? No
    Rodgers? No
    Wilson? No
    They all understand what it takes to succeed in the NFL..Preparation. you prepare for film work, OTA’s, Mini camps, Training camp, practice, games…Time spent partying and sleeping off a hangover is time not preparing.
    His talent is not above theirs, so how can he possibly compete with them?

  53. bucsorbust says: Jun 24, 2014 3:54 PM

    Is it a career if it lasts less a year?

  54. lacarious says: Jun 24, 2014 3:58 PM

    emmit is da man… but… its a new world out there dude

  55. bucsorbust says: Jun 24, 2014 4:00 PM

    All indications are Johnny Football cares about Johnny Not Football. Got hung up on by radio show host Steve Duemig two days after the draft. He was upset because the Bucs didn’t draft Manziel. He asked our thoughts. I called in and said from the little I’ve seen, Manziel will put his own desires before the team, and I was much happier his WR Mike Evans than JF. He got mad and said I was “dumb.” Well, Johnny seems a bit farther down the road to tragedy than that day. So glad he’s not a Buc.

  56. sladewillson says: Jun 24, 2014 4:04 PM

    I wonder who will be the first to realy welcome this fool to the AFCN Baltimore or Pittsburg… Mr Johnny “show me the money” Football was drafted into the lions den of divisions, in the words of Steve Smith Sr “ice up son”

  57. ubepunkedagain says: Jun 24, 2014 4:12 PM

    I wonder why Emmitt doesn’t have any comments about Teddy Bilgewater and his teeny tiny little hands? Maybe he caqn give us some insight about how that straight and narrow Bradford hasn’t lived up to expectations of a #1 overall pick (or a 3rd rounder for that matter). I would love to hear his insight to Lovie Smith and how he goes through OCs like they are going out of style.

  58. cornerstone2001 says: Jun 24, 2014 4:55 PM

    I’m going to have to “learn manage” to understand Emmitt

  59. anothervoiceofreason says: Jun 24, 2014 5:15 PM

    When an individual’s “persona” takes on a life that is so exponentially larger than the actual person can ever possibly measure up to, they’re likely headed for some sort of crash. It’s becoming clearer every day that even if JF is not photographed or sighted partying in public EVEN ONCE more for the rest of the off-season/pre-season, it no longer matters…the articles will continue to be written.

    His persona has officially become the “product” that virtually anyone can profit from, simply by stating an opinion about JF, wearing a JF shirt, flashing JF money hands, announcing a JF draft/recruitment/award/etc. Hell, I’m willing to bet that a PFT post with just his name in the title and zero content would still get more hits than virtually anything else.

    How in the world could that not affect a person’s psyche in a profound way? And the QB has got to have his head in the game 100% in order to excel. Love him or hate him, you cannot honestly believe this circus won’t have an impact on the mental aspects of his play – it’s just a matter of to what extent.

  60. bucsorbust says: Jun 24, 2014 5:15 PM

    Here’s the thing on Johnny and why his lifestyle doesn’t matter…

  61. thebiblestudent says: Jun 24, 2014 6:01 PM

    Manziel = Jeff George

  62. uglydingo says: Jun 24, 2014 6:37 PM

    Johnny Football’s off the field activities are what helps to define him – he doesn’t give a damn what anybody thinks. He’s brash and rich and has a bold personality.
    If he can become a successful QB, he might just pump some life back into the Browns and that will be good for the NFL.

  63. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Jun 24, 2014 7:20 PM

    nite2al says:
    How are you people blaming Emmitt for what his teammates did? Like M. Irvin would really take advice from a younger player? LOL.

    Emmitt is speaking from seeing these things first hand!

    You miss the point. No one is blaming Emmitt for Irvin’s behavior. The point is Irvin could party with the best of them back in the day. Make riding a swan look like child’s play. But he still proved to be a very good player and a reliable teammate. Manziel will too likely.

  64. deathonwings410 says: Jun 24, 2014 7:41 PM

    Johnny Manziel has bust written over him. Emmitt Smith is totally right on this. Bortles and Bridgewater will become good QBs.

  65. smitty113 says: Jun 24, 2014 7:44 PM

    Smith is afraid Johnny will get blowed up.

  66. thereyougo2 says: Jun 24, 2014 7:49 PM

    Hey, he might be another Bobby Lane.

  67. 88xfactor says: Jun 24, 2014 8:16 PM

    Emmitt would’nt even be talking about JF if he did’nt think he had all that potential. I think Emmitt really cares about the kid. Maybe even wanted him to be a cowboy.

  68. Norseman says: Jun 24, 2014 8:31 PM

    Manziel has a tough set-up as it is being drafted by Cleveland. There are a lot of missing pieces and the team hasn’t had a winning culture for some time, to say the least.

    He’s got a well-deserved reputation for being a spoiled rich kid, with a poor work ethic and not listening to coaches.

    There is enough there to turn-around if he is to be successful without being the party-guy and getting into trouble besides.

    If he has a slow start to his career- which seems likely- there is nothing to save him from flaming out very quickly.

  69. lanman11 says: Jun 24, 2014 9:05 PM

    What if the Browns had drafted Tom Brady #1 in 2000 instead of Courtney Brown, considered the #2 Worst Draft Pick Of All Time? Had they done that, Manziel would be someone elses problem today.

    As it was, they drafted Spergon Wynn in the 6th round at #183, 16 spots ahead of Tom Brady. Tom Brady was still on the board…..and they decided Spergon Wynn would be a better pick. Brady was playing in front of 100,000 plus crowds just 150 miles away….. WTF??? Can you imagine how that would have changed History in Cleveland? With Brady’s intensity on the field and the way he smashes helmets with linemen and tight ends, he would have fit in well with The Dog Pound.

  70. lanman11 says: Jun 24, 2014 9:07 PM

    Then again….could they have drafted a Michigan Man in Ohio, and still sell season tickets? Lolzzz.

  71. jimhudson78666 says: Jun 24, 2014 11:28 PM

    What wealthy young NFL player doesn’t party In the Off Season! This is crap from has been and never weres, Johnny Football is a Star! Something the No Fun League needs, Corporate types aren’t heroes! Emmit was a great Cowboy but Michael Irvin was the heart and soul of the 90s Cowboys! Emmit is a wuss and a no fun guy now!

  72. 88xfactor says: Jun 29, 2014 1:04 PM

    I’m sitting here looking at Manziel now. Just his body language tells me that he has an attitude. Probably becauce he’s not the man in camp anymore. I hope he gets it together, I really do. And for the cowboy haters mainly grantsbuds maybe you should go back and look at some of those most hunderated WR tapes. But I’m guessing you’re a giant fan

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!