If you’re the Saskatchewan Roughriders, you do whatever it takes to get former Texas A&M QB Johnny Manziel to work out for your squad.
Even if that means breaking the Canadian Football League’s rules.
According to Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio, who cites a report from The Hamilton Spectator in Ontario, the Aggies’ Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback worked out for the CFL squad in an apparent move to jump-start his dying football career.
Sources say Manziel was put through the paces by the Riders in Florida in advance of last month’s Senior Bowl. Manziel resides on the Hamilton Tiger-Cats’ negotiation list, having been added on Sept. 9, 2012 and Saskatchewan did not have permission to conduct the workout. That’s a violation of CFL bylaws, according to the league.
“The rules regarding the neg list are outlined in our by-laws. A team has exclusive rights to a player on their neg list,” according to a league official. “Therefore that player could not be contacted by, worked out by, or negotiate with another club unless consent is given.”
Roughriders general manager Chris Jones reportedly denied that any contact between Manziel and the team took place.
After being drafted 22nd overall in the 2014 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns, Manziel washed out of the league following the 2015 season amid a litany of legal and personal issues. Manziel sat out the 2016 NFL season but made more headlines with TMZ for his actions off the field than with ESPN for his work on it. Now it appears Manziel decided to take his football career seriously once again.
At just 24 years old, Manziel has plenty of time and talent to turn things around.
Manziel appeared at the Texas A&M signing day festivities last week, and Aggies coach Kevin Sumlin said he had a good talk with Manziel while he was in College Station.
Johnny Football has reportedly volunteered to submit to drug tests to add validity to his attempt to return to the gridiron.