Prepare the world for bad news, and the DFW bars for a spike in business - Johnny Manziel will be a Cowboy.
On Cowboys owner Jerry Jones’ final appearance of the 2015 NFL season on his weekly appearance on the Shan & RJ Show on 105.3 The Fan, I could not ask specifically about Johnny Stupid, so instead I asked him whether he would be OK acquiring young, developing QBs that come with baggage and will likely be available this offseason.
I was thinking of Manziel, and Redskins’ third-string quarterback, Robert Griffin III. They’re both former first round picks. They’re stars. They will be cheap. They are also both under contract, which means Jerry can’t address either specifically without violating the league’s tampering rules.
“We all would be aware to bet on more for our backup quarterback has elements of risk to it. I’m not sure that’s any riskier,” Jerry said. “What would enhance me taking risk is a big, bigger upside. If that upside is there, this is as far as we are going to go there, now, with this. I don’t want to get involved in any tampering situation. We can take some risk.”
I had asked Jerry if the Cowboys would be comfortable selecting a quarterback with the fourth overall pick in the draft, to which he said yes. Tony Romo said Monday he is OK if the team selects a QB, which he does not mean because since he became the starter he has never had a threat to push him.
All of these guys squirm when a young guy is looking over their shoulder.
I also asked Jerry if he wanted to bring back defensive end Greg Hardy, which he would not answer but did say that in the past month he was good on the field.
“He was the player on the field. Off the field, adjustments were made and he cooperated,” Jones said.
To Manziel ... it has been widely reported that in the 2014 NFL Draft, when Manziel was falling, Jerry wanted to “go for it” and select the Texas A&M partying quarterback. Jerry was trumped, and the team selected Notre Dame guard Zack Martin, who was an All-Pro as a rookie.
This offseason will be different. Manziel has been an immature, druken disaster since he arrived in Cleveland, and all signs point to his release this spring. The same for Griffin.
One month ago, I was on board with bringing Johnny in to tick the tires and see if he can play. As Mr. Media Professional, I will forever remain in favor of bringing this natural disaster to Texas.
The football observer in me says to avoid Johnny. Johnny’s behaviors over the past month suggest he doesn’t get it, and that he has not bottomed out. Until he bottoms out, which would mean no NFL, no fame and less money, he won’t change.
But fully prepare for the Browns to cut him, and then the Cowboys to bring him in for an interview where he will say he has matured, and that he is a changed man. After that, it will be 24/7 Beer-Thirty.
Jerry still owns the team, and is this team’s GM, so all he has to do is to “clear the room” and do whatever he wants even if every other person in the organization says no. The Cowboys still belong to Jerry.
Manziel was rated as the sixth-best player on the Cowboys’ draft board in ‘14, and now they can get him for nothing. He has been erratic but not without promise in limited playing time. There is something there.
The Cowboys need a backup quarterback, and one to develop behind Romo in case of the next time he is injured, or he retires. Manziel fits that description. To Jerry, he is worth the risk and he doesn’t care if it’s 5 o’clock somewhere.