Report: Sam Bradford informed of Johnny Manziel “smokescreen” before it started


Rams coach Jeff Fisher has said more than once this offseason that Sam Bradford is the starting quarterback in St. Louis, something that kept being necessary because the Rams kept finding themselves linked to Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel during the pre-draft process.

Fisher made another show of support for Bradford on Wednesday night, telling a room filled with revelers at the team’s pre-draft party once again that Bradford’s “our guy.” Bradford was standing next to him at the time, which would have made it quite awkward to say anything else although Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Fisher’s show of support was about more than avoiding an uncomfortable situation.

Per Thomas, Bradford was made aware of the Manziel “smokescreen” before it got underway and the team has always been intent on dealing the pick rather than bringing Johnny Football to St. Louis. There might be another layer or two to the smokescreens before the Rams pick Manziel and he reveals himself to be Tom Cruise while on the stage with Roger Goodell, but things don’t really have a Mission: Impossible feel at the moment.

There doesn’t seem to be much of a push from teams trying to move up for a quarterback, though, although the reportedly high price for the Texans’ pick could make the No. 2 pick attractive to teams looking for help at other spots on Thursday. That would be especially true if Jadeveon Clowney is available after Houston picks, but the Rams may also just have to accept the “high-class problem” of picking second overall.

68 responses to “Report: Sam Bradford informed of Johnny Manziel “smokescreen” before it started

  1. Question — can the Rams trade the pick now, or do they have to wait until Houston picks until they can actually trade the pick?

  2. In Bradfords case (his Native American hertiage), wouldnt it be smoke “signals”?

    national football league= where indian stereotypes are embraced!

  3. I would like to propose a moratorium, if not an outright ban on the use of the term “smoke screen”. Fans and sportswriters alike use it to the point of insanity. Anyone else glad it’s finally Draft Day?

  4. As talked about in the other Rams thread, the Rams are in a tough position as the #2 pick does not hold as much value as in other drafts.

    What St. Louis needs to hope for: Clowney not taken at #1.

    Lets not kid ourselves, it’s only because this draft is delayed that most of these FUBAR stories/scenarios are being reported. Clowney is a potential once in a generation player, if he falls to #2, then and only then can St. Louis come close to an RGIII type deal.

  5. On the day before the draft Colt McCoy was told he was the Browns’ starter right before they drafted Weeden two years ago.

    These FOs don’t may owe these players the truth, but they don’t always share it. Bradford has done little to warrant his contract and his job security should be on the table.

  6. On the day before the draft Colt McCoy was told he was the Browns’ starter right before they drafted Weeden two years ago.

    These FOs may owe these players the truth, but they don’t always share it. Bradford has done little to warrant his contract and his job security should be on the table.

  7. So it’s a smoke screen which he knew about. A smokescreen is basically to make people think you want someone you don’t for trade purposes. Then it’s let out he knew about said smokescreen letting the world know its a smokescreen. That is some really good smoke screening

  8. Dear local media sources-

    These smokescreens your teams may or may not be setting aren’t as effective when you talk about them on the world wide web.

    Thanks for the help, buddy,
    Jeff Fisher

  9. Dear Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Dispatch,

    These smokescreens your teams may or may not be setting certainly aren’t when you try to out them as smokescreens on the world wide web.

    Thanks for the help, buddy,
    Jeff Fisher

  10. Why would a Rams source reveal the Manziel link was a smokescreen? Unless that is a smokescreen? Wait, what were we talking about again? The draft process has gone on long enough to beg for mercy.

  11. If the Rams pass on RG3 and Manziel then Bradford turns out like Mark Sanchez they are going to look pretty stupid.

  12. So the Rams may be “stuck” with the second pick because of the predatory standards they established a couple years ago.

    Too funny.

  13. I think Sam still has a shot of being pretty darn good. Needs a little more help still but thanks to the Redskins he gets it.

  14. I said they same thing to myself over the last couple weeks….i bet they told Sam about this in advance….and as far as trading down….i don’t see that happening either….and give up the chance to draft Watkins , Robinson, or Mack? Silly Rabbits

  15. I wouldn’t call Bradford a bust. He just never really turned into a NFL Bust and hit his fullest potential after college.

  16. Bradford is just unfortunate he’s a bit unity prone now and he plays in the toughest and most physical defensive divisions the nfl has seen in decades . Theirs a top 5 defense waiting for him every nfcw game . Compare that to manning who only played one all year . Hard to survive and win yet alone put up good numbers …

  17. What did this guy do to deserve a smoke screen?

    He was the worst Offensive Rookie of the Year choice ever and lost to Seattle in week 17 of the 2010 regular season.

    He’s also a putrid yard/attempt passer.

    6+ YPA??

    Franchise QB?? Never was, never will be.

  18. Dude, you have 2 first round picks. Use them. Take Clowney, Mack, or Watkins at #2. Then use that other first rounder on another need position.

    There’s a reason high picks are so valuable, because that’s where the best players are drafted. Me personally? I want the best players so I’m using those picks if I’m them. Although I did agree with them trading the RG3 pick 2 years ago.

  19. These perennially crummy teams like St. Louis should learn a lesson already and draft a good player that high (Robinson ) instead of dealing.

    There is no 2x SB MVP enticing teams to trade up that high for.

  20. Rams will take Mack to pair him with Olgetree… and still be able to grab another solid player at 13. Rams are silly if they trade out. I would take Watkins to be brutally honest and then go grab Barr from UCLA.

  21. All these ‘smokescreens’ are pretty ridiculous. I might be more confused if a team stayed silent. Then it may appear that they are set on who they might draft. If a team thinks it is their guy, they might make a great offer.

  22. dont they realize the draft is tonight? Why not admit the smoke, you know, AFTER THE DRAFT in case in might work? Seems a bit dumb to call it now

  23. No one listens, I said back when-Johnny Manziel is a living smokescreen. Johnny Manziel will not go until at the earliest in the 20’s of the first round. Johnny Manziel is popular among the media and they push him and people who don’t take their football seriously think he’s “the guy”, but GM’s, Player Personnel Managers and coaches especially head coaches are not going to hang their hats on Johnny Manziel in the early rounds-again at the earliest Johnny Manziel will go in the 20’s of the first round!

  24. It isn’t much of a smokescreen when Fisher is constantly saying that Bradford is his quarterback. Maybe if he hesitated or nuanced it a little, someone might buy into the bit.

  25. It’s not a smoke screen if you don’t confuse anybody. I think most teams were happy St. Louis was “thinking” about Manziel because it meant a better prospect was going to be an option for them.

  26. “Sam, just so you know, we’ll be employing an elaborate smokescreen where we draft Manziel and start him for 4-5 years to increase his trade value.”

  27. Smokescreens are only effective if someone bites on it. Most GM’s are smarter than that but then we have your Minnesota Vikings. Watch for them to bite on Thursday night.

  28. All you Bradford haters out there – buckle up because 2014 is his year – and the RAMS WILL MAKE THE PLAYOFFS.

    The guy finally has help on both sides of the ball.

    I often wonder if anyone here actually watches film or the games for that matter.

    Sammy B is a winner and can play the position. Period.

  29. If everyone keeps bringing up Manziel, why does Fisher really care what the media is saying? If they aren’t going to draft him then why the heck does he need to keep convincing everyone that Bradford is the qb in STL? It makes literally no sense, usually the rumor will be denied after the first or second time, but for the fifth time why does he still try to convince the media that they aren’t getting Manziel? Seems the smokescreen is there so Bradford doesn’t see what’s coming.

  30. It’s pretty simple-if the Rams have their eyes on Watkins or Mack they need to stay at #2. If they want either Robinson or Matthews they can trade down to the 6-9 range to a team that wants to move up and gain at least an extra pick in the 2nd.

  31. Bradford is a lemon… and since he couldn’t keep his mouth shut about this smokescreen, perhaps they ought to just go ahead draft them some Manziel!

  32. Code for Vikings didn’t offer up what we wanted for Bradford so now we are going to keep him and pretend it was just for show.

    Bradford,,,,,,,,,,they don’t want you but can’t cut you. I guess you are staying.

  33. Bradford is not the answer. They were dumb to pass on rg3 regardless of the picks they received. No QB = no Super Bowl.

  34. This is why we love the draft. High drama ,reality t.v. and smokescreens that are not…really real smokescreens ? I kind of like Christmas to be on time. I preferred the draft on the weekend schedule as well .I will watch virtually every second of the draft and always will. Hey NFL : don’t be messin with my draft.

  35. With the way the draft deception works, I wouldn’t be surprised if this was just a reverse smokescreen itself… sigh nothing in the draft is knowable…

  36. After the draft smokescreens there’ll be media fog banks to contend with…..GO RAMS!!

  37. “Dear other 31 teams, with less than 9 hours before the draft takes place, we just wanted to inform you that we are running what is called a ‘smokescreen’ to trick other teams into trading up for the #2 pick. We now eagerly await your offers.”

  38. I like Bradford, but he does not have what it takes. Should not have passed on RG3, who I dont like, but he is an upgrade over Bradford. Poorly done by Rams, and now they get a lot of picks but again have a mediocre QB. They will move on from him too late, probably in 2016.

  39. If their intent was to actually get someone to bite on a trade, a general rule of thumb is not to let the cat out of the bag until after the draft.

    I think this particular smokescreen was pretty stupid actually. Nobody was going to buy it.

    Plus, what makes them think that Manziel is the only player that a team would be willing to trade up for? Clowney, Mack and Watkins are all prime candidates for a trade up.

    Again, this whole thing was pretty stupid.

  40. Sam Bradford has been a disappointment in the pros after his spectacular career at OU. Although his NFL QB rating of 79.3 is better than I thought. He had several surgeries in college and has never been healthy enough for long enough.

    I think the Rams will stick w/ SamB and I don’t see them taking Johnny Football in the draft. Except as a backup. JohnF will never be happy as a backup. He’s a superstar or so he thinks. He (Manziel) does have unique skills but will they transfer to the NFL?

  41. I am a 49er fan, and I am glad the Rams did not pick Manziel because the 9ers would have to face him twice a year. Now that he is in Cleveland, he becomes a problem for the Ravens, Steelers, and Bengals twice a year.

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