The Hamilton Tiger-Cats remain keenly interested in signing Johnny Manziel, and Manziel remains keenly interested in playing for the Tiger-Cats.
The strongest clue comes from Wednesday’s statement from team V.P. Kent Austin, who said that the team isn’t “interested in signing Johnny right now.” It’s hardly a blanket disclaimer of interest at any time, as reinforced by his ongoing presence on the team’s exclusive negotiating list.
The Tiger-Cats are keeping a low profile on this one. right now. After the failed effort to hire Art Briles, the organization is likely fearful of making any other moves that could invite any other scrutiny. After the Briles-fueled furor dies down, that likely will change.
Manziel’s interest in the Tiger-Cats was made obvious by the fact that he worked out for them. While teams typically work out players they may not be interested in signing, players rarely work out for teams they’re not interested in joining.
To his credit, Manziel finally has realized that his path back to the NFL consists of playing in the CFL, an approach taken by plenty of players who later became stellar performers in the NFL, such as Cameron Wake, Warren Moon, Jeff Garcia, Doug Flutie, and Joe Theismann. Too many players who see their NFL careers end early chose to wallow in the perception that they were treated unfairly (cough, Tebow, cough) instead of risking the possibility of going to Canada and having the criticism of his skills confirmed.
And, yes, once it’s clear that his NFL opportunities have expired, Colin Kaepernick should play in the CFL, too.