Montreal Alouettes quarterback Johnny Manziel says he’s feeling better after a “frustrating” recovery period from a concussion and can live with whatever head coach Mike Sherman decides about who will start Friday against Ottawa
“I won’t go into a ton of detail about it but I started to feel more normal towards the beginning of last week and once you start to feel normal is when you start the protocol stuff, easing your way back into activity,” Manziel said after practice Wednesday. “They told me early last week that it was unlikely I was going to be able to play. I know I wanted to. I’ve never missed two weeks in the past when I’ve had a concussion so this has been a longer slower process for me that I’m accustomed to and I think it’s definitely been frustrating,”
Manziel says he doesn’t regret going back into the game after taking a hellacious hit from Redblacks defensive back Jonathon Rose at the goal line during Ottawa’ win on Aug. 11.
“During the game, we went through the protocol that we had and the doctors felt that they needed to. I felt fine. That doesn’t change sitting here two or three weeks later,” he said. “I felt I started to see some symptoms days after.”
Sherman reiterated that he hasn’t committed to a starter for Friday’s game saying he has faith in both Manziel and Antonio Pipkin, who led the Alouettes to victory last week. Nor does he feel pressure to play Manziel, who the Alouettes’ paid a king’s ransom for in a trade with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
“I’ve never felt that pressure from anybody. My pressure is to play the right quarterback to help us win the game, that’s the only pressure I ever feel,” Sherman said.
Manziel says he’s fine with whatever Sherman decides.
“I’m working my way back in, easing my way back in to practice. I really wasn’t fully cleared… today’s my first day where I’ve been out of the protocol,” Manziel said. “I’m okay with whatever coach Sherman comes with. We have a good relationship, we talked this week. We’ll see how things play out and be ready either way.”
Manziel said he has no ill will towards Rose or his decision to put his down and try and bull his way into the end zone.
“It was a good hit, it’s unfortunate I had to miss two games because of it,” Manziel said. “It’s easy to look at the film and say you should have slid at the 1-yard line but I’ve played football my entire life and come across a lot of situations like that and it hasn’t played out like that in the past.”
Sherman says it’s possible the Alouettes could use both quarterbacks.
“It’s always an option.”