Cleveland Browns: Lessons Learned From The Johnny Manziel Fight


Faces being “smashed.” Reports of an entourage size royal rime.. A drunk fan who just wanted a hug. The Johnny Manziel fight rumors ruled talk radio this week and finally, Manziel addressed the press Friday, giving his side of the story. This comes after the alleged victim reported to Cleveland Police that he had been assaulted by Manziel and the people he was hanging with.

Manziel was never charged in the matter, or even considered a suspect, and it was left unclear whether or not he threw a punch, according to ESPN.

Manziel did say his lifestyle has changed since the documentation of his party-boy summer, and he felt that going out on this night was OK, because it’s something a lot of NFL players do.

That’s an accurate statement, but it doesn’t mean Manziel is right. Not every player’s star shines as bright as Johnny Football’s, which is why there are some important lessons to take away from the incident:

It isn’t easy by Johnny Manziel.

Despite being a back-up who wears a beanie on the mildest of Cleveland days, a large number of the population knows who he is,  what he looks like, what he had for lunch and how many times network cameras show him on the sidelines–not playing.

Manziel transcends the sport and the Browns because of his celebrity. He’s a former Heisman winner who makes more headlines for the things he does off the field. Living under a microscope can’t be easy, but it’s part of the territory that comes with Johnny Football.

Johnny’s not yet serious about competing to be a starter in the NFL.

If he were committed to beating out Brian Hoyer, Manziel wouldn’t be in public at 2:30 in the morning, just hours before his team is about to depart for a road-game.

By Manziel’s own accord, he doesn’t live the partying lifestyle that so many of us witnessed leading up to Training Camp. Still, he made a judgement call, and it turned out to the wrong one.

Yes, he does live at the hotel/condo where the alleged altercation took place, but as fictional diehard Cleveland sports fan Ted Mosby will go down saying, “Nothing good ever happens after 2 a.m.” 

Talk of Manziel “being young, and letting him life his life,” has been beaten to death. He may have been an innocent bystander in the alleged melee, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that trouble can and will find you when you’re a someone of his celebrity.

The incident also goes back to summer, when media accounts indicated Manziel had a chance to steal reps, and playing time from Hoyer.

Find the coach/GM/executive who might’ve offered Manziel the advice that upon being drafted, he should: 1) Go to Vegas; 2) Get photographed partying with hot girls…and 3) Float on an inflatable swan at nightclub…and you’ve found someone who’s lying to you about working in the NFL.

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You can take Manziel at his word that his life has quieted down, but it doesn’t mean he had to go out. Hoyer has talked about the intense preparation Tom Brady goes through, and how that work ethic rubbed off on him.

When a player wants to get to that level, there are no nights off.

The fact of the matter is the Manziel incident has no impact on the Browns against the Bills this Sunday.

It may have ramifications this offseason, when the Browns try to determine whether Hoyer is the answer at quarterback, but come Sunday, it won’t matter one iota.

The Browns are in the business of winning games, and Hoyer gives them the best chance to do that. This statement was validated by Manziel’s latest headine, even if Johnny Football was just a guy trying to avoid a intoxicated fan.

Next: Photographed: Mike Pettine Enjoys Victory Cigar In The Georgia Dome