Quarterback Johnny Manziel has activated the 10-day window that will force the Hamilton Tiger-Cats to offer him a contract according to CFL sources.
Under CFL rules, any player on a team’s exclusive 45-man negotiation list can demand to be offered a contract within 10 days. If a contract offer is not received within that period, the player is removed from the neg list. If a contract offer is received but rejected, the player is removed from the list one year from the offer date.
The CFL has confirmed that the Ticats could offer Manziel a two-year contract – all entry contracts are one-year plus a team held option – at the league minimum of $53,000 per season and retain his rights until mid-way into 2018.
It’s not clear when Manziel’s representatives activated the 10-day clause.
The Ticats worked out Manziel in August, though vice president of football operations Kent Austin said on Aug. 30 that the team wasn’t on the verge of signing the former Texas A&M star.
“We’re still interested in Johnny Manziel, he’s on our neg list,” Austin said. “We’re not interested in signing Johnny right now. That’s not imminent.”
The CFL has also said that Manziel would have to go through an assessment with an expert in domestic violence prevention and meet with CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie before the league would approve a contract. Manziel was charged in January 2016 after being accused of hitting and threatening former girlfriend Colleen Crowley. He reached a dismissal agreement that required him to complete an anger management class, attend a domestic violence impact panel and participate in a substance-abuse program.
Manziel has been on the Ticats neg list since his days at Texas A&M, where he became the first freshman to capture the Heisman Trophy. The Cleveland Browns selected him in the first round, No. 22 overall, in the 2014 NFL draft and he spent two seasons with the club, posting a 2-6 record as a starter before being released March 11, 2016.