On Wednesday, February 26th, the Montreal Alouettes released quarterback Johnny Manziel. The Alouettes stated that Manziel had “contravened the agreement which made him eligible to play in the league.” Kavis Reed, the Montreal General Manager, stated that “Mr. Manziel violated a condition of his agreement with the league. He was given opportunities to rectify the situation with the league and chose not to . . . The league and our team put a lot of infrastructure in place for Mr. Manziel to be successful.” Reed also commented, “ In addition to being let go from the Montreal Alouettes, the Canadian Football League has also banned Manziel from ever being signed to another CFL team. The CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie commented in a press conference, “We advised Montreal that Johnny had violated one of the conditions we had set for him to be in our league. We didn’t release the terms of those conditions then and we’re not going to do that now. We’re trying to do what we believe is in the best interests of the entire league. The conditions we set, we thought were the right ones. Those conditions have been violated and we feel it’s best, and Montreal feels its best, to let Johnny move on. And we think it’s best for our league that he do the same. And we wish him well.”
Although we do not have the specifics on what rules Manziel violated, it isn’t the first time he’s been caught breaking regulations, or rules in general for that matter. His more serious offenses started in June of 2012, before he was even recruited to play college football at Texas A&M University, where he was arrested and charged with three misdemeanors: disorderly conduct, failure to produce identification, and possession of a fictitious driver’s license. The offseason of 2013 was filled with incidences, ranging from complaining about a parking ticket, getting kicked out of a fraternity party, and then being suspended for the first half of the season opener for allegedly receiving payments for autographs (although this was never confirmed). In 2015 Manziel entered into a treatment program for undeclared reasons. In 2016 after being drafted by the Browns, Manziel was demoted to third string quarterback after a video of him partying surfaced, and then was completely removed from the last game due to a concussion, where he later failed to visit the team physician, which is a part of concussion protocol. The year 2017 was arguably the worst year for Manziel, where his marketing agency as well as his agent left him, there was an investigation opened regarding domestic violence against his girlfriend, his drug problems came to light, and he was suspended for four games due to failing an NFL drug test.
All of that aside, Manziel isn’t a bad player. Manziel is the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy, the Manning Award, and the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award; was First Team All American by multiple news sources including ESPN and Sports Illustrated; was Sporting News College Football Player of the Year; was the SEC Offensive Player of the Year and many more. He obviously has the talent, just not the brains. But where does that leave Manziel? Where will he go from here? In a tweet, Manziel stated that he wanted to explore “new options within the United States.” He could go anywhere from the XFL to even the AAF. Regardless of where he goes, if his behavior continues, he will have no where else to go, and what a waste of talent that would be.
Claire Coburn is an Intern Writer for Pub Sports Radio