Aikman, Brees are high on Johnny Manziel’s NFL future


Troy Aikman and Drew Brees know a little something about playing quarterback in the NFL, and they both think that Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel is going to have a big-time player on Sundays.

Aikman told Sporting News that in addition to Manziel’s obvious ability to make plays with his feet, he likes the way Manziel can throw the football.

“I got a chance to see his game against Alabama from start to finish, and I was really impressed with a lot of the throws he made,” Aikman said. “There’s no doubt in my mind that with his playmaking ability, he was doing it last year as a freshman against good competition, I would anticipate that he will go relatively high, whether he will be a first-round pick I don’t know, but I think he’ll be successful when he gets his opportunity.”

Brees told FOX Sports that the scouts who downgrade Manziel because of his height (Manziel is about six feet tall, same as Brees) don’t understand what’s really important to playing quarterback in the NFL.

He is a heckuva player,” Brees said of Manziel. “He’s fun to watch. He makes all kinds of plays. He’s got all the playmaking ability to be a great player. [There are] guys like [Manziel] in this league. Russell Wilson and his ability to run the football and extend plays outside the pocket and throw the ball down the field. . . . There’s way too much weight put into physical stature as opposed to can you find the open guy. Can you deliver it accurately? Can you make plays? Can you lead your team to victory? Can you lead them? Period.”

Manziel isn’t viewed as a sure-thing prospect, and few people think he’ll be drafted ahead of players like Oregon’s Marcus Mariota and Louisville’s Teddy Bridgewater. In addition to the questions about Manziel’s size, some question his ability to pass from the pocket, and there are also his off-field activities to consider. But people who know the quarterback position seem to like the way Manziel plays it.

58 responses to “Aikman, Brees are high on Johnny Manziel’s NFL future

  1. I heard Aikman on Francesa’s show today extolling John Pigskin’s virtues. While I like him, I think he would only thrive in certain systems, unlike Bridgewater, McCarron or even Murray.

  2. Who questions Manziel’s ability to throw from the pocket? Additionally, I’d like to see anyone other than Manziel throw for 450 and run for another 130 (even Jameis Winston) against the best college football program of this generation. There isn’t anyone. Hate him or love him, there is not a better football player at the college level. Nor is there a more exciting player. I can see an argument being made for Bridgewater at the pro level over Manziel. But Mariota?! Give me an effing break. He can’t sling it like Manziel, not even close. But hey, Mariota is 6-4 though! YEEHAW!

  3. He has to go to a good team with good football people or he will Kap out at some point and never achieve his true and full potential. The sky is the limit, but the ground is the starting point.

  4. what off field concerns? the fact like every other college kid he like to party whether he is old enough or not or the fact he was smart enough to beat the ncaa at their own game and get paid for his name? let me know when he is popped for drugs,multiple dui’s beating his woman or any of the other crimes committed by pro’s or other prospects.

  5. Manziel is a baller. Anyone with two eyes can see he can play in the NFL ad be a winner. Anything else is just pure hate. Hate that he likes the have fun, is a bad boy and doesn’t cater or bow to the status quo.

    Keep kickin ass Johnny. They can’t stop you. Only write and complain. OW!

  6. Yes, he’s very exciting to watch, I’ve been able to catch several A&M games this year. Most of his stats so far are even better than they were last year, especially the number of touchdowns.

    Except for one stat: interceptions. He already has 11 this year, with two games left, compared to 9 for all of last season. And he’s made 119 fewer attempts to hit 11, too. Still not bad when you think about TD/INT ratio, but he might need better judgement on some throws to play NFL.

  7. It will be interesting.

    People also doubted Newton, and he was dominant in college. I know it’s still early but he didn’t turn out too bad.

  8. He’s gonna cost some GM a job. The Russell Wilson comparison is nuts. Wilson is a solid citizen and a great leader with a strong arm. Manziel is a Prima Donna, rabble rouser, who does not have NFL throwing skills and will lead only to the strip club.

    Or to jail.

  9. This is all B.S. Picking College quarterbacks for the pros is a crapshoot. Just because they say he might be good doesn’t make it so.

  10. Lots of players are fun to watch in college.

    You know which ones succeed at the NFL level? The boring ones that don’t run around trying to make a 270 lb. DT miss.

  11. attyken says:
    Nov 14, 2013 7:31 PM
    I have a feeling that Chip Kelly will take a flier on this guy.

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    Right, because his current guy with 16 TDs and 0 picks is on thin ice.

  12. “I don’t see it, he’s too small. He’ll get busted up in the NFL.”
    I agree, Pisano. He’s a special player, but those agile qb’s take too many hits from next level DLs and LBs. Russell is awesome – and he stays in the pocket most of the time.
    Kid can throw the rock, though. This Crimson Tide fan knows it all too well.

  13. This dude needs to be in Minnesota, second coming of Fran the Man!! Keep Ponder around for next year and let Johnny Football learn the system! Is it May yet, I can’t wait until the draft, if Spielman screws this up he won’t be safe anywhere! Period!

  14. Everyone seems to forget that this guy is nothing but a punk waiting for a payday. He will do absolutely nothing in the NFL except take the money and run…just like JaCarcus. Stay far away Raiders…please!

  15. No offense but, any poster calling someone a “rabble rouser” should drink their prune juice and go to bed.

  16. Regardless of how you feel about Manziel is he has two things:

    1. He has an NFL arm, and that doesn’t mean strong, it means he has an arm that can make NFL throws: Out routes, curls, etc He has great ball placement and the arm strength to stretch defenses down field.

    2. He can extend plays with his feet.

    Many “athletic” QBs coming out of college has one or the other. They can either make NFL throws, or they can run around and take off. The important thing to note is that Manziel is a pass first QB, he has the tools as a passer where he can go to the pros and not have to worry about his mechanics, but he also has the ability to extend plays as a runner.

  17. kerrchris65 says: Nov 14, 2013 7:30 PM

    Russell Wilson is a smart quarterback. Manziel is too wreck less with the ball. He gets bailed out by his 6-5 received.


    Yeah because there are no 6-5 receivers or 6-7 pass-catching tight ends in the NFL these days.

  18. Johnny is a tall Doug Flutie.

    Here is hoping he does not have to go to Canada for years before he gets a legit shot to start in the NFL. (Key word “Legit”)

  19. I hope the Cleveland Browns fall in love with this kid!! He’ll get broke in half in the AFC North.

    No offense t8tertot. No way the Bengals spend a 1st or 2nd round pick on a QB. We need LB depth and OL depth too badly. Not to mention maybe even another CB. Leon Hall keeps getting banged up and isn’t getting any younger. Adam Jones and Terence Newman aren’t getting any younger either. Especially Newman. Who knows what we have in Dre Kirkpatrick yet. Need an upgrade at Center as well. No way QB is high on our needs list!

  20. Not to mention Manziel is a head case! I work with a guy that just graduated from Texas A&M last year and he’s a die hard Aggie fan. Not that this guy is an NFL scout or anything but he even says Manziel is an immature headcase. Take it for what it’s worth.
    AFC North defense’s would eat this kid alive.

    Why I’m hoping that Mike Lombardi falls in love with this kid!

    Just my 2 cents anyways. 🙂

  21. I don’t know about Aikman, since he is a sports commentator now, but Brees is never going to say something negative about another player when asked, so you can probably take what he says with a grain of salt in this regard. He’s not going to trash or talk bad about a college player to the media.

  22. Sorry about this post but just got a look at the Colts offensive coordinator, Pep Hamilton with a hoodie on along the sidelines. Thought I was looking at Obama. Could be his twin or him.

  23. I’ve watched enough of manziel to be able to tell that his numbers are to some extent reliant on the system they run. His situation reminds me of Tim Tebow, but hey Tebow went in the first round. Now, after a moment in the sun, he’s an untouchable.
    I do think you can knock Manziel for his physical limitations though, because most people seem to think hes more athletic than he actually is. Hes a long shot for success in the nfl.

  24. He is just an every day college kid who likes to party. He is extremely athletic but his decision making on his throws is a bit off. He could be good or bad but he’s definitely a guy that likes the spotlight and could be an arrogant d bag but then again that’s better than a murderer or woman beater. I say why not draft him Jaguars?

  25. “Maybe Saints will draft him to succeed Brees.”

    I think this would be a great place for Manziel. Learning from one of the elites can do wonders for a young QB. Aaron Rodgers said learning from Brett Favre helped him greatly to become the QB he is today. Maybe Manziel can benefit from the same thing under Brees.

  26. Again, wasn’t it Aikman a few years ago during a Cowboys-Giants game that said Miles Austin might be the best receiver in the league? Don’t know that I’d trust Troy’s talent evaluation after that statement

  27. somethingsmellsrotten says:
    Nov 14, 2013 8:05 PM
    Everyone seems to forget that this guy is nothing but a punk waiting for a payday. He will do absolutely nothing in the NFL except take the money and run…just like JaCarcus. Stay far away Raiders…please!


    First, you sound jelly and second, the Raiders have been irrelevant longer than my Cowgirls so they could use all the help they can get…

  28. Wow! Many great college QBs have not had their games translate to the pro, and Manziel has quite a few red flags that could land him with this group.

    – Doesn’t have a sturdy build. Not just height (shorter than 6 ft) but his weight and body structure (less than 200 lbs.). Both Brees and Wilson are bigger.

    – Poor mechanics (footwork & arm slot).

    – Needs to throw his whole upper body into any downfield throw with zip on it.

    – Decision making. He continuously throws passes up for grabs and relies on his 6-5 receiver to come down with the ball.

    I don’t see how that translates to the NFL in the long run.

  29. Wow! There are also of haters out here! Not a Johnny Football fan or Aggie fan – as an outsider looking in I see this:

    Here is a guy who’s entire team feeds off of his leadership. That is what separates true leaders from wanna be’s. I’ve been fortunate enough to see this kid play in person 1 time, and the entire team and crowd revels in the excitement that he brings to the field.

    In today’s marketing heavy NFL, this is the kind of athlete that the league is starving for. This is the kind of athlete that they will make sure has a great career purely for the marketing aspect of the business.

    I hope that he has a successful career simply because he is incredibly fun to watch, but personal vendettas aside, “Give em hell Johnny!!”

  30. Brett Favre 2.0…People will love him, and hate him, but they will respect him. It’s gonna take a HC with patience, an OC with intelligence and players that want to win. He’s a leader and commands with authority. He will have the occasional trainwreck of a game but he will win a Super Bowl along with a MVP or three. He is a total and complete nightmare for a defensive coordinator and Im thinking by the end of the 3rd quarter defensive linemen will be so exhausted from chasing him around that they’re sitting on the Ben h in the 4th sucking oxygen and getting fluids. Wanna bet against me? Let me know, I’ll be happy to take your money!

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