Today it was revealed by Bleacherreport.com that Johnny Manziel, Heisman winner, media favorite, and Texas Aggie twitter king that he “hopes he’s better than Tim Tebow” as a passer. So sayeth Manziel in an ESPN interview (see video) with Skip Bayless, posted June 12, 2013, which is going around the internet as fast as one of Manziel’s famed passes.
The video opens with a scene of Johnny coming out of San Antonio’s Hard Rock Café downtown, fresh from last night’s opportunity to watch the Spurs beat the Miami Heat in true Texas fashion, with a big win. To be fair, Manziel has had quite a busy week and the media just can’t stop talking to him, and he responds to virtually everything he’s asked. That’s essentially the heart of the problem that many see as media overexposure and too much hype.
“Me and …me and Steven A. (Smith, ESPN broadcaster on First Take)…we talked a little about this. He’s a great dude. He’s a great person and he deserves this chance that he is getting in the NFL. I do truly believe that from the bottom of my heart. As far as being a starting quarterback in the NFL, I don’t know that it really suits him. I think the Patriots, I think the Patriots will be a great place for Tim Tebow….I think it’s a great fit for him. I just don’t (like you) hang on one throw and one game in the playoffs, regardless if it was a great throw on a slant, on the money…four or five when you got a season of 300, 400 throws, whatever…”
Johnny’s brief remarks in the interview, stated with heart, barely contain his excitement at being on a program that he said, during the interview, he watches most every day. It must have been one heck of a joy ride for the young man. In 2007 Tim Tebow was the first underclassman awarded the Heisman Trophy. Tebow won it as a sophomore.
So you have the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner, the first freshman to win the biggest prize in college football, front and center on everlivin’, everlovin’ ESPN, saying what he thinks of an NFL quarterback who may not have set the world on fire statistically (at least not what Steven A. Smith calls “an NFL quarterback”), but someone the New England Patriots signed as an NFL quarterback. And Manziel answers.
Then, all havoc breaks loose after the interview with questions as to whether or not Manziel was taking a shot at Tebow, putting him down. His quote (above) continues in the video and he winds up saying ‘No sir’ to his buddy “Steven A” and one of his biggest proponents, Skip Bayless, who never played a down in the NFL are just busy talking the talk about whatever suits them, their right as syndicated sports journalists.
Manziel’s quote du jour was simply, “I would hope I am a better passer than Tim Tebow.” An honest answer to a no-win question that the ESPelunkers are heaving his way. It would seem that Manziel is in a no-win situation as long as he is enjoying the arena of public attention, but he has himself as partly to blame. He apparently insists on living out loud on Twitter with everything he does.
Manziel has had a busy week, as his Twitter posts will show. He managed to travel to Miami, June 9, because he had to see the Miami Heat and root for LeBron, “HAD to make Game 2 in South Beach #Weinhere #BacktoWorkTomorrow,” then you can follow the posts as he proclaims he’s a LeBron fan, his loyalties in Texas lie in Dallas, shows nothing but love for San Antonio that’s like a second home he says, but…you can read it for yourself.
The young man has been called out in a gentle big brother fashion by Heisman Trophy winner Andre Ware a second time no less this week. The web site Mrsec.com details Ware’s repeated message to Manziel (originally stated in April): “Tone it down,” after media reports of Manziel appearing in country singer (and fellow Aggie) Granger Smith’s new video (see story link below).
The Bleacherreport.com story asks your opinion: Was Johnny Manziel taking a shot at Tim Tebow? You can still vote today and voice your opinion.
The overly abundant media opportunities through the course of the NBA playoffs, and on into professional baseball, one of Manziel’s stated passions, and anywhere there is a camera—any single one of these things can turn into Manziel’s worst nightmare if he’s not careful. Youth notwithstanding, there is no media savant guiding him through these days.
He’s simply stated over and over that he’s a normal kid who loves living life and living large. Many Aggies, especially, are quick to defend Manziel and his mouthing off as “leave him alone, he’s just a kid. He’s having fun” and all the other phrases moaned in rather whining fashion in unenthusiastic fashion to ask for forgiveness, lest any commentary putting down the young upstart be proffered.
Sadly, public opinions of Manziel are, and will be, formed on anything he says regarding other athletes. What the public will say of him will be more vocal, particularly in just two months’ time, when he plays his next, and likely his last, year of college football at Texas A&M. Just let him miss a few passes, and the Aggies will rise up and begin their rants and chants about how he should have been working harder in the off season rather than playing golf at Pebble Beach and criss-crossing the country to catch his favorite games.
But let’s face it. He believes himself to be a rock star and this is exactly the kind of pedestal to which the media have raised him. The only thing is that young Johnny didn’t get the memo that the takedown is harder than the buildup to accept as “normal” no matter what his age.
Manziel is focused on hoping for an NFL career. He may well have been “back to work” and “putting in the hours” and his own natural talent may have him soaring above the clouds this fall in the aggressive season the Texas Aggies face. He may well be a football savant and his unparalleled drive to succeed and a wonderful spirit of competitiveness may well be all he needs to complete those passes, hit the receivers in the numbers and outscramble beefy linebackers who’ve been staring at his picture for months now, with a bullseye around his smiling face. Judgment day begins August 31 when the Rice Owls come to Kyle Field, complete with the always entertaining Marching Owl Band. Lest anyone think Rice is an easy win, even the braniacs in Houston have had future NFL quarterbacks at the helm before. Remember Tommy Kramer?
As for Tim Tebow, his success with the New England Patriots doesn’t rest on the opinions of Johnny Manziel, Skip Bayless, or Manziel’s buddy, “Steven A.” Smith. Manziel can hope he’s a better passer than Tebow, but he has yet to be drafted in the NFL or even finish his sophomore season.
Given his pointed grammar goofs during the interview on ESPN’s first take, it’s clear that one of the online courses Manziel took last Spring was not English literature. Then again, no one cares about dangling participles or incorrect grammar usage when you’re trying to put a touchdown on the board. But they will care when the day and time comes that you’re hoping to be an analyst for ESPN. And that’s a fact.