Manziel sprinted onto the field, eager to lead his Spring League team to a final scoring drive that would cap his first game in 832 days.
This is where Manziel found himself on a Saturday night in April, not in an NFL offseason program, but instead in a minor league game surrounded by long shots and never-will-bes.
And with it came the realization that whatever attributes he can demonstrate to NFL scouts here in two Spring League games, it won’t be his best, and it certainly won’t be enough to sway a skeptical team to make him an offer.
From what I can tell, the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats covet Manziel while NFL teams know they will get limited insight at best from a two-week stint in a developmental league.
Terry Shea, a longtime NFL quarterbacks coach who leads the Spring League’s football operations, said Manziel has peppered him with questions.
Johnny Manziel threw the lone touchdown pass in his Spring League team’s 11-7 loss on Saturday night.
Fellow Spring League quarterback Cody Keith, who played at East Carolina and UNC-Charlotte, said Manziel has called him daily to discuss play installation and options.
Three more days of practice and one final game await Manziel in the Spring League, after which he’ll hit an important leverage point in his comeback.