CFL clears Johnny Manziel to play next season


Johnny Manziel has clearance to resume his pro football career in Canada.

The CFL announced Thursday it would approve a contract for Manziel should it be negotiated with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, who hold the quarterback’s rights.

In August, the former Heisman Trophy winner worked out for the Ticats, who passed on making him an offer. But Manziel’s camp activated Hamilton’s 10-day window, forcing the CFL club to make a decision on whether to sign, trade or release him.

The CFL then stepped in and extended the window for further evaluation.

The following month, Manziel met with commissioner Randy Ambrosie to discuss a resolution, which included Manziel having to fulfil certain requirements to join the league. Shortly afterwards, the CFL announced the Ticats would hold Manziel’s rights until Nov. 30 before extending it again into January to continue with its due diligence.

“As a result of this process, the commissioner has now informed Mr. Manziel and the Tiger-Cats he is prepared to approve a contract for Mr. Manziel should one be negotiated,” the CFL said in its statement. “The process that led to this decision does, however, will continue.

“Mr. Manziel has been informed he must continue to meet a number of conditions in order to remain eligible. These conditions, while extensive and exacting, remain confidential.”

Manziel, 25, captured the Heisman Trophy in 2012 at Texas A&M and was selected in the first round, No. 22 overall, in the 2014 NFL draft by the Cleveland Browns.

But the native of Tyler, Texas, was released after just two seasons and has been out of football since.

“We appreciate the CFL office and commissioner Randy Ambrosie’s due diligence in this matter,” the Ticats said in a statement. “We also recognize Johnny Manziel for thus far demonstrating the attributes necessary to continue his career in our great league.

“We will have no further comment at this time.”

Erik Burkhardt, Manziel’s agent, didn’t immediately return a telephone message Thursday.

Earlier this month, after signing a three-year contract to remain Hamilton’s head coach, June Jones boldly gushed about Manziel’s potential.

I think he’d be the best player to ever play up here,” Jones said. “He can throw it and he can run it like nobody ever has been able to do.”

– CP


52 Comments on CFL clears Johnny Manziel to play next season

  1. Carrie Cueto // December 28, 2017 at 12:55 pm //

    Finally, Manziel’s way to the CFL & the Hamilton TigerCats has been cleared. His imminent signing will be a major coup for the organization & will give June Jones the QB who can fully realize his offensive schemes.

    • Carrie you have high hopes for a guy who had a so so NFL career and has been out of football for 3 seasons plus. He doesnt know our game and it could take him a full season to learn it. Most chances are he will only use the CFL to resume a pro career down south and sign for the standard 2 seasons. With 1 year getting back into game shape and possibly 1 good year I find that a lot of investment for little return on any CFL teams part.

      • I agree he’s going to have to learn the ropes, but given that the CFL attitude seems to have become more about “what can you do for me now” rather than the long term, I don’t think his potential career length is worth considering at this point.

        Should he sign though (and he’s likely to get more than entry level coin, perhaps bonus laden based on performance), I think we’ll see the Collaros domino fall and a nicely competitive contract offered to Masoli.

      • Manziel is a head case. Out of football for almost 3 years and engaged to a Kardashian worshipping attention mongering IG model. No thanks….

    • i think you are right on that. June has been looking for QB that can pass and run at a high level all his life.

    • Agree. For all the naysayers watch his highlight reel. Still has the most wins as Browns starting QB than anyone that has since replaced him.

  2. Carrie Cueto // December 28, 2017 at 12:57 pm //

    Can you imagine the extra revenue and media attention the Tabbies will get for, this signing. Manzeil jerseys will be a hot item, season ticket sales will spike & no doubt TiCat games will be in demand in the US. This is good for Hamilton and the CFL.

    • just look at all the money Texas [email protected] made in just two seasons. Google Manziel revenue effect Texas [email protected]

    • Can you imagine how many fans actually have morals and values. Party Johnny the wife beater. Sounds like a great fit for Scott Mitchell just like the last debackle, not putting any thought into the brand reputation of the TiCats.

      • One last time, Art Briles was never convicted or charged of anything, he was never named in any lawsuit coming out of Baylor. This in a country that sues for everything Briles was never sued for involvement. So what exactly is the debacle? Or Scott Mitchell hurt the Ticats brand? The only issue was fans on social media acting like judge jury and executioner! That was the debacle!

      • Carrie Cueto // December 28, 2017 at 8:36 pm //

        Buddy, first learn to spell. Secondly, are you without fault ??? Hypocrite. Please go piss on yerself.

        • You and Ari are the same troll….spinning away

          • blackgold56 // December 31, 2017 at 10:22 am //

            Carrie, Briles was on Mitchell and Manziel will be on Mitchell. Learn how to spell, lol…did your feelings get hurt that someone didn’t agree with your post?

  3. Carrie Cueto // December 28, 2017 at 1:00 pm //

    Of course, there will be naysayers who are self righteous moralists and who know better than June Jones. All I have to say is that the kid cleared all he bogus CFL protocol that treated him like a convicted criminal, which he isn’t. Also, if June Jones thinks Manziel can dominate, who are we to disagree ???

    • Art Briles wasnt convicted of anything either! He got ousted by fans on social media. Never charged but Manziel was. Never even sued in privately in a country that sues for everything but social media convicted him and he was never given a second chance and June Jones knew him personally, but who were we to disagree!

      • greenonions // December 28, 2017 at 2:30 pm //

        Sorry Garney-got to go with Carrie. Social media has had months to get riled over the imminent entry of Manziel. If you’re going to get upset now, where was all that righteous indignation when the topic came up in the first place? Take a seat. Unlike Briles, who was brought in to Hamilton unannounced with the Baylor fiasco still fresh for a lot of people, this has passed the CFL protocol process. Unpopular decision or not, do your due diligence & then take a stand. That’s been done. End of story. If you bend to social media, Chris Jones would have been gone last year, Durant would still be there with Getzlaf, Chick & Dressler. Maas would have been gone this year & Dickenson would have followed him after the Grey Cup with one of Jorden or McDaniel in tow. Pretty soon you’d have no one left except a bunch of people who never make mistakes & have no opinions, lest they get tossed out the door. As for the same crowd who bring up “haters” to shut people up every time someone has an opinion other than yours, time to find another word in the dictionary.

        • So what exactly are you disagreeing with you are only proving my point. I haven’t liked the idea of Johnny signing in Hamilton since the start and it has nothing to do with his past so don’t put words in my mouth. My opinion is that we fans haven’t the right to decide what’s right and wrong, why is Manziel ok but Briles not, if you are just looking at past actions. I don’t what Manziel for reasons I’ve stated multiple times on this site. #1. He has been out of football for 3 plus seasons.
          #2. He will need most of the season to get in shape and learn the CFL game.
          #3. He has no desire but to use this as a stepping stone to leave as soon as possible to go to the NFL.
          And your statement makes little sense? Who cares if the Ticats brought in Art Briles without us knowing? Since when is a team need permission from us the fans? Oh that’s right in todays age of social media!

        • greenonions your post does not make sense. Carrie is a TiCats plant along with Ari and Marcus

    • There is nothing bogus about it. The charges against him were going to be dropped on November 30th if Manziel met certain conditions by then. As an employer, that’s the kind of thing you would rightfully want to be aware of.

      Let’s not lose sight of the fact that this was all the result of Manziel’s own behaviour. Maybe if he didn’t have so many people making excuses for him, he’d have learned about accountability prior to pissing away his NFL career.

    • Seriously?

  4. Oh after all that scrutiny and prolonged protocol and a final clearance to play in the CFL? Manziel was kind of put through the ringer, per say compared to others who have come to play in the CFL who have questionable past. IF Manziel is serious and Ti-Cats have his rights, should have the opportunity to have a try out and see IF he can grasp the Canadian game, and be a bona fide QB in the league. OK Manziel blew his opportunities in the NFL, with his talent, but his immaturity and off field decisions were poor. Maybe he has learned from that. Too many judgemental people today, who have never made mistakes. Give the guy a bloody chance at least, if he does flop, or screw up? Then he hasn’t reformed or rehabilitated himself as he claims. I for think if he does excel, should and could bring some excitement to the CFL.

    • Never raised a hand to a woman- don’t go there buddy. As a fan base we lose it, rightfully so, over Art Briles who June Jones also “wanted”. Now we want to bring a guy who has been blacklisted from the NFL because he lacks the moral integrity to be a positive role model. As well as he played years ago that everyone is making their case on- he continues to this day to be a person that makes horrible decisions off the field.

  5. Start the CFL marketing machine up. This signing will be a very healthy signing for the CFL as a whole. Whether fans realize this or not, this marketing machine will lead the CFL into the Atlantic provinces and possibly Quebec City. As a diehard Ticat fan, it is exciting to see a player with this much talent come to this league and truly light it up. I still say that Masoli goes to Montreal and that it will be Collaros and Manziel that are here. Now I would also like to see the Ticats sign some talented wide receivers. Duron Carter is one who comes to mind to catch for him.

    • greenonions // December 28, 2017 at 2:09 pm //

      Carter & Manziel on the same team?? The egos have landed. Be careful what you wish for Ari.

    • art .. Texas [email protected] refurbished their stadium from all the extra revenue from just two years having Manziel. I wonder though with all the coaching turnover after this Sunday if one of his coach fanboys similar to June Jones may get an NFL slot and pull him along. Thinking Kevin Summlin or The MNF guy.

      • Who are you Scott Mitchell??? All about the money- bet you lose it. There are fans that can’t stomach the hypocrisy.

  6. The league needs to develop protocol about situations like this. The existing rules got broken twice. Hope it works out for the cats

  7. June Jones should of said Manziel will be given every opportunity to make our football team, let him come in with low expectations not OMG he will be the best player to ever play up here, too many nfl prospects deemed to be can’t miss in the cfl failed miserably and for a franchise that is trying to right the ship this could turn out badly.

  8. How does the cats handle there existing qb situation

  9. Does this mean the “10 day window” to offer a contract starts today?

  10. Masoli & Manziel will both flourish under June Jones.

  11. Stephen Fisher // December 28, 2017 at 1:38 pm //

    Two words
    Troy Smith

  12. Thanks for the GC run, Collaros! Before his injury, we were winning by halftime! Be nice to have a team do that again.
    Yes, a number of nfl stars have bombed here, but not this one! We will be hosting the East final next November, guaranteed!
    2018: The Year of the Cats!

  13. Does history repeat itself? Remember Vince Ferragammo.

  14. Blue Rules // December 28, 2017 at 2:02 pm //

    To those who say to bring Manziel in from the USA is no big deal, think again! A person, any person who is not a Canadian citizen, has to come through Canadian customs, who if they have a questionable criminal record, may still enter Canada with restrictions that can be monitored and enforced by his employers (CFL,Ticats). Mr.Ambrose is only doing due diligence. If he is now cleared with conditions, those conditions must be met!

    • greenonions // December 28, 2017 at 2:15 pm //

      You’re kidding right?? Under the Libs pretty much everyone gets in. The criteria is pretty low. Didn’t seem to be a problem in Hamilton with a certain coach. Do you expect JT to miss a photo op with Johnny Football?

  15. Johnny Manziel will be a huge asset for all cfl teams. The media coverage and hype will have many people watching his performance. He is coming to play ball as there are agreed to conditions between the cfl and ma duel while he is playing In the cfl. If Johnny football violates the terms of the agreement the cfl can pull his rights to play.

    All cfl should give him a good welcome and hope he succeeds. He becomes one of our own who gave Him that chance in Canada when he returns to the states we all will have someone to watch that we can say allowed him that opportunity.

    Lot of media attention coming to the cfl cities. Attendance and television ratings will benefit the league. Johnny Manziel could get more in endorsements than salary if successful and I believe he will. American melenials love his talent.

    I for one had to beat cancer recently and I beat it this fall. I have my second chance and I believe we all deserve that in life.

    • not being cynical here John but you made my eyes teary. I am also rooting for Mr. Manziel as Addiction by any major medical authority is considered a disease. I am coming off my own misdiagnosis pharma drug nightmare Finally got myself to stop cold turkey. The fact a doctor did it to me is no different then voluntarily starting. Either way it takes willpower to get clean. Here us to second chances. A Canadian tradition.

    • Carrie Cueto // December 28, 2017 at 8:40 pm //

      Dude, no one here gives a rat’s behind about your personal victory. Your mention of cancer is completely inappropriate & unncessary. Besides the analogy you are foolishly trying to create is completely misguided. Your are talking about life & death and we are talking sport.

  16. if he signs with Hamilton and gets injured in the first pre season game and is out half the season and you have traded and or released Collaros or Masoli what is your next option..

  17. June Jones enjoyed a decent season last year but it remains to be seen if he can pull it off next year especially by bringing in Tubby Manziel.

    There’s a reason this guy is not headed back to the NFL – they know he’s little more than party boy who is not showing much interest in football as the pics from the beach showed.

    This Manziel love has the potential to make the CFL a joke.

    Remember the first openly gay player who ‘tried out’ for MTL – only to have players whispering ‘wtf’s’ as the guy hadn’t a clue on how to play his position. The only reason they were whispering was that they didn’t want to get caught sounding homophobic. It turned out the Als were so anxious to get him (insert HAM for Als) that they failed to check his football acumen. Again there was a reason no NFL teams came calling and sexuality had little to nothing to do with it.

  18. If you’re interesting in learning more about Manziel check out this story on the Vanity Fair website from Nov 2016:

    The former Cleveland Browns quarterback’s epic fall—from the hottest thing in football to N.F.L. washout—was agonizing for those who tried to prevent it. His inner circle describes the clash of talent and temptation.”

    • Greg you need to immediately approach the nearest neurologist and book an appointment as soon as possible. The lack of grey matter between your right ear and your left ears needs to be addressed as soon as possible.

  19. Cue the QB controversy.

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