FORT WORTH, Texas - The first thing you notice about Johnny Manziel in person is that this is not a thin, little dude. This is a thick kid who looks like he can take a hit. He looks strong, with rather large hands. As Twitter follower @CourtnieWyche says, "He has a giant head, too!"
He is a legit 6-foot. Probably not an inch taller. In today's NFL, that's enough. And if you are Texas A&M, that has to make you a little nervous.
Manziel is in Fort Worth this evening to receive the 3,454th trophy he has been awarded for the 2012 season - the Davey O'Brien award.
Normally at his height he would stick around for three more years before looking at the NFL. Given how the little guys look like they can play quarterback in the NFL, we are likely looking at the last year of Manziel at College Station.
After the 2013 season, Manziel will be eligible to enter the NFL draft. He says he's not thinking about it, which is a total load. And he should. No one looking at a first-round signing bonus should ever pass.
"Right now it’s worrying about this upcoming season and if things, if you’re fortunate enough to get a chance to go to the NFL draft, then you get to send your stuff in and see how you would be evaluated, so when that time rolls around I guess we’ll worry about it then," Manziel said.
He says his priority is to do something that Texas A&M has never done before - win a national title. A real one. Not one of those bogus titles when only white guys plays white guys. Not one of those titles the school awarded itself last fall.
One year ago if someone told you a 6-foot quarterback could thrive in the NFL the normal response is Drew Brees. It can happen, but you should not plan for it. The success, and the style, of Seattle Seahawks rookie quarterback Russell Wilson (5-11, 206) has changed the way people may view Johnny Football.
Manziel said he is a fan of Wilson now.
"Being a shorter guy, a chance at the NFL at a high draft pick, that’s something that I’ve only every dreamed about," Manziel said. "I love A&M and I love everything about it, so when the time comes I think it will be a hard decision."
"You look at (Wilson) and what he’s done this year and how he played. You look at his stature and some of the things he’s done, it’s impressive," Manziel said. "The NFL is, like a lot of people, are changing. It’s changing. You look at guys who are mobile. You look at RGIII, Cam Newton, Russell Wilson, (Colin) Kaepernick. Kaepernick goes to the Super Bowl and he came out of nowhere. There’s a lot of things that can be done with more mobile guys. You’ve still have your (Tom) Brady and (Peyton) Manning and stuff like that, but I feel like the game’s changing a little bit."
Even if the uber-mobile QB is a fad Manziel's window is open so it would a surprise if he doesn't take advantage of it.
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