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Texas A&M Football

Gruden: 'All I know is I want Johnny Manziel'

April 30, 2014
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ESPN Analyst and Super Bowl-winning football coach Jon Gruden has no stake in this year’s NFL Draft.

But if he did, he’s made it clear he would stake a claim on Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel.

Gruden said in a conference call with national media on Tuesday that he would not hesitate to select the polarizing Texas A&M quarterback in next week’s NFL Draft.

Manziel had four offensive coordinators and two head coaches at Texas A&M. It didn’t matter. He adapted and had the two most productive seasons in the SEC. I don’t know what you want from him. All I know is I want Johnny Manziel. - Jon Gruden {"Module":"quote","Alignment":"left","Quote":"Manziel had four offensive coordinators and two head coaches at Texas A\u0026M. It didn’t matter. He adapted and had the two most productive seasons in the SEC. I don’t know what you want from him. All I know is I want Johnny Manziel.","Author":"Jon Gruden"}
“He wants to learn, and he can learn,” Gruden said in a conference call with media members across the nation. “Manziel had four offensive coordinators and two head coaches at Texas A&M. It didn’t matter. He adapted and had the two most productive seasons in the SEC.

“I don’t know what you want from him. All I know is I want Johnny Manziel.”

Gruden’s points are poignant.

Manziel was recruited to Texas A&M by Mike Sherman, who was his own offensive coordinator. 

When Kevin Sumlin replaced Sherman at head coach he brought in Kliff Kingsbury as offensive coordinator. Clarence McKinney and Jake Spavital also held that position.

Despite those changes, Manziel passed for 7,820 yards and 63 touchdowns in his two-year career with the Aggies. He also rushed for 2,169 yards.

He did that while frequently playing against strong defensive teams. In his two seasons A&M faced 10 defenses that were ranked among the nation’s top 40.

Aggie receiver Mike Evans did, too. And, like Manziel, he set records and is projected as a high first-round selection, perhaps to Tampa Bay with the seventh pick.

Gruden appeared to be sold on Evans, too.

“He’s a big ‘X’ receiver that, to me, is a prototype split end, much like Tampa already has in Vincent Jackson, a guy that is a dynamic force when the ball is in the air,” Gruden said. “He can go get it, he’s a threat to run with it after the catch, and when he wants to he can be a dominant blocker.

“He’s really very similar to Vincent Jackson. I don’t know that you want two of those on the same team — and I don’t know that you don’t.”

But while few doubt whether Evans can be successful in the NFL, there remains a cloud of uncertainty about Manziel. Many of Gruden’s colleagues said they would not draft him.

ESPN Analyst Merrill Hoge said Manziel has “bust written all over him.” Ron Jaworski, another ESPN analyst, said he wouldn’t take Manziel in the first round of the draft.

Andrew Cagle, TexAgs The majority of the 'concerns' about Manziel have been disproven by he or others and the rest seem to just be plain wrong. {"Module":"photo","Alignment":"right","Size":"large","Caption":"The majority of the \u0027concerns\u0027 about Manziel have been disproven by he or others and the rest seem to just be plain wrong.","MediaItemID":38020}
Originally, there were questions about his arm strength. However, those concerns were put to rest after Manziel demonstrated what Oakland Raiders coach Dennis Allen called “more than adequate” arm strength at Manziel’s pro day workout.

There have been concerns about his celebrity status, his playboy reputation and his durability, even though he never missed a start for the Aggies.

There was even some concern that he measured 5-11 ¾ at the NFL combine. Of course, there have been similar-sized quarterbacks that have had great success in the NFL.

Russell Wilson, who led the Seattle Seahawks to Super Bowl victory last February, is 5-11. Drew Brees, who led the New Orleans Saints to a Super Bowl win in 2010, is listed at 6-0, though some believe he’s shorter.

Michael Vick is listed at 6-0.

Gruden sees none of those issues as a legitimate concern regarding Manziel.

“He’s under six feet, so maybe he can’t see over the line,” Gruden said. “I think with Russell Wilson and Drew Brees, that theory has been blown out of the water.”

Yet, even though Gruden apparently has no questions about Manziel, there remains a question of which team will select him. The Houston Texans have the first selection and need a quarterback, but speculation is they will take South Carolina defensive end Jedaveon Clowney.

Also in need of a quarterback are the Jacksonville Jaguars (third pick), Cleveland Browns (fourth), Oakland Raiders (fifth), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (seventh), Minnesota Vikings (eight) and Tennessee Titans (11th).

Rumors have surfaced that the Dallas Cowboys (16th) could try to move up in the draft to select Manziel. Some have even wondered if Manziel could fall in the draft — much like Aaron Rodgers, who dropped to Green Bay at No. 22 in 2005.

The New York Jets could be interested at No. 18.

Gruden said don’t count on it.

“If (Manziel) is there at No. 18,” Gruden said, “I’ll buy you a steak dinner.”
Discussion from...

Gruden: 'All I know is I want Johnny Manziel'

18,518 Views | 18 Replies | Last: 6 yr ago by SwigAg11
Olin Buchanan
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Staff
S
Gruden: 'All I know is I want Johnny Manziel'
RespectTheDecision
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Winchestermodel77
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ShotOver
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AG
Don't screw this up Texans....
MROD92
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gig_em02
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Got to love Gruden's confidence!
ladyag10
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WilliamF
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AndersHolmvik
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zephyr88
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AG
The Texans gonna screw did up den...
Lateralus Ag
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AG
I wonder how many chicks have said that same thing?
Womackster
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TAMU77CLAY
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MidTnAg
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AG
GM's, are you listening?
West Point Aggie
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AG
quote:
I wonder how many chicks have said that same thing?


What an ODD thing to wonder about...
TexAgs91
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AG
> What an ODD thing to wonder about...

It's also odd that Gruden says he wants Johnny Manziel. It's not like he's a head coach or anything.
clonebucky
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AG
I've always been on the fence with the Texans.

I think they are about to throw me off.

Always been a Cowboys hater, too. I wonder if that will have to change.
SwigAg11
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