Johnny Manziel vows improvement in 2019

As he cleaned out his locker following the Montreal Alouettes final regular season game, Johnny Manziel told football writers that he will be returning to the Alouettes in 2019 fully ready for a full season of football in the Canadian Football League.

The Alouettes acquired the 25 year old Manziel in a trade with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and watched as he was intercepted four times in his first game with the team. He didn’t win a game until his seventh start and he only played a half in that win against Toronto. In his final game of the year, in his return to Hamilton, he was limited to just a quarter. The former Heisman Trophy winner and first-round draft choice of the Cleveland Browns finished the season completing 106 of 165 passes for 1,290 yards. He had five touchdowns along with seven interceptions.

Alouettes quarterback Johnny Manziel, left, says goodbye to receiver Eugene Lewis after cleaning out his locker at the Olympic Stadium in Montreal on Sunday, Nov. 4, 2018. JOHN MAHONEY / MONTREAL GAZETTE

Still he will be returning to the CFL and the Alouettes come training camp in May, 2019. As he told reporters:

“At least I have a plan now, knowing I have a place to come back to. I’m under contract. I haven’t had that in a while. I’m all in … for next year. I’m all in being back here. That starts from the day I get back home (Monday). I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”

Manziel spent two seasons with the Browns in the NFL before being released in March 2016. He then went two full seasons without playing professional football and wasn’t signed by Hamilton until May 19. Then he spent the first six weeks on the bench, behind incumbent Jeremiah Masoli.

Once in Montreal, playing behind an offensive line that struggled and changed constantly, he too struggled, at least initially.

He had his best passing game against Calgary throwing for 250 yards but without a touchdown. However, as he grew more comfortable with  the offense, he started to look more confident.

“It’s been a good learning experience,” he said. “It hasn’t gone exactly the way I wanted it to as far as winning games … the product on the field. I’m excited for next year already. It’s bittersweet that the season’s over. There were growing pains, but I truly feel like I’ll be better … moving forward. I’ll be much better next season.”

Source: Montreal Gazette



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