Johnny Manziel has not played in the NFL since the 2015 season, and not currently being affiliated with a team as training camps near, the former Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback’s chances of a 2017 comeback are decreasing.
But Manziel said he’s had “a couple of discussions” with teams about a possible return to the league, Jon Machota of the Dallas Morning News reports (on Twitter). The Browns cut Manziel in March of 2016, and legal issues and strange off-the-field headlines seemed to distance him further from a possible comeback.
Multiple reports, however, linked Manziel to a potential return to the league. Saints coach Sean Payton had breakfast with the former first-round pick, but the team was not believed to have strong interest in the dual-threat signal-caller. New Orleans also went in a different direction in signing Chase Daniel and Ryan Nassib this offseason.
“I know the situation I put myself in. I know the year off and obviously the mistakes that I made,” Manziel said, via Machota (on Twitter). “Right now, I’m hopeful. I’m really hopeful. I think that I made some progress in that regard, but we’ll see. Whenever I get a call, I’ll do whatever I can to make the most of it.”
Manziel declared himself sober months ago and was willing to submit to drug testing in advance of a comeback bid. The latest interest in the passer appears to be more on the exploratory side, but Manziel being just 24 may not rule out a reclamation project attempt from a team. But the longer the former Texas A&M superstar is out of football, the slimmer those hopes get.
“It’s hard sitting here going through OTA time and going through summer time and then getting ready to go through fall camp and not being a part of it,” Manziel said, via Machota (Twitter link). “But at the same time, I’m really optimistic and hopeful that I’ll get another chance. That’s really what I’m holding out for every day.”
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.