In order to preserve contractual rights that the Hamilton Tiger-Cats have held for years, the Tiger-Cats officially have offered a contract to Manziel. Whether it will be accepted remains to be seen.
“Despite much speculation and several comments from the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and CFL, Johnny and I have remained silent and continued to focus on his training and preparation,” Manziel’s agent, Erik Burkhardt, said in a statement issued Monday.
Burkhardt broke his silence with a lengthy press release, pointing out that the CFL has an “archaic and restrictive rule” allowing teams to claim a player’s rights “and essentially hold those rights into perpetuity, without any consideration or compensation for the player.” As to Manziel, the Tiger-Cats squatted on the player six years ago, when he was a freshman at Texas A&M.
Burkhardt explains that he has given the Tiger-Cats until January 31 to “work out a fair deal” with Manziel. Burkhardt describes a “fair deal” to mean a contract “on par with what Hamilton has paid their QB in recent years, despite not having much on-field success.” [Editor’s note: Savage.]
Absent a deal with the Tiger-Cats by January 31, Burkhardt says that he and Manziel “will turn our focus to several other professional options readily available to us.”
Burkhardt mentions a potential trade to another CFL team, and that possibly is one of the other options. For now, Manziel has no options in the NFL. If he goes to the CFL and plays well there, Manziel eventually may have an option south of the Canadian border.