Johnny Will Be Johnny
First the Cleveland Browns drafted Johnny Manziel, then they told him to act like the backup that he is. Shortly thereafter they told the media they weren’t invited to his first practices; okay maybe just the local media could come for the first 10 minutes. Now J. Football is being criticized for taking a few days away from the glamour of Ohio over the Memorial Day weekend and hitting Vegas with a few friends (many of whom turned out to be hot women). My question is, what the hell did people think Manziel would do with his free time, no matter where he went in the draft?
People are what they are, and Manziel is a phenomenal football player. He does amazing things on the field that you just can’t teach. He also likes to have a good time. He did at Texas A&M when he was a freshman on his way to the Heisman Trophy, he did when he was a sophomore, putting up better stats than the year before. Somehow, amazingly, he could do both — play great football AND party like a rock star.
Cleveland and the rest of the world had better get used to it because that’s what J. Football is, a rock star. He’s bigger than Cam Newton, bigger than RG3, bigger than Cleveland, in all honesty. The Browns should be proud that they have a rock star at quarterback. The critics have said that Manziel needs to realize that Cleveland is a blue collar city and they don’t appreciate hot dog players. Well maybe Cleveland is viewed as a second-rate city for just that reason. They have one image, always have had it, and “by God no snot nosed punk from Texas is going to change that.”
Maybe instead of asking Johnny to change and become more like “the mistake by the lake,” the city and Browns fans should become more like Manziel. Cities can change their image, South Beach in Miami was left for dead a few decades ago. Utter decay and homelessness were the staples of the area from about 1960 until 1990. Now it’s one of the coolest places in the country. High end hotels and condo’s, restaurants catering to celebrities, real estate prices through the roof. Clevelanders can relate, their city has been spit on, left for dead, abandoned even by their homey LeBron and the original Browns.
Let Johnny begin a rebirth of Cleveland, make it a cool place to live and work. Is that possible? Hard to say, it would be a long process but why not go that way rather than force Johnny to become more like them. The fact is Texas A&M was never “cool,” College Station was one notch up from Waco. Johnny made it cool and suddenly people wanted to go there in droves. He had free time, he’s 21 years old and he’s soon to be richer than he already was. I’d worry more if he wanted to stay in Cleveland, or Ohio in general. The only thing Cleveland or Browns fans or front office should worry about is if Johnny can’t produce on the field, but everything in his past says he can. Let him do what he does and lead the Browns and Cleveland into the promised land…of the Midwest.