‘John’ Manziel has ‘closed the book’ on the CFL

Johnny – er, make that “John” – Manziel was on the Dan Patrick Show Monday morning and discussed his disappointing past, uncertain present and rather bleak future in the game of football.

Manziel has been a regular guest on the show and Patrick is one the best interviewers in the business so the conversation was unusually candid.

First, the CFL stuff:

“I think looking back at my time going to Canada, I was so hungry to get back on the field and play that I took the first opportunity to get back on the field. When I looked up at things a year later, they weren’t exactly what they were when I originally signed in Hamilton with June Jones, where I thought I was going to be running the run and shoot, watching Colt Brennan highlight tapes to learn the offence from the Hawaii days,” Manziel said.

“I have no regrets about going to Canada. It’s just one of those chapters in my life that now I’ve closed the book on. And I’m looking forward to better things moving forward.”

Patrick asked Manziel if his departure was his decision or the league’s.

“I don’t really know about going into a ton of details of everything that happened but looking back at it now, I’m happy. Memphis was exactly what I needed in my life,” Manziel said. “From the first day I walked on the practice field and got to see 11 guys on the field, things were slow for me again and it was a great chance for me.”

Jones certainly talked up Manziel before his arrival, saying he had the potential to be the best ever to play in Canada. But by the time the team traded Manziel to the Alouettes for a king’s ransom, Jones’ tune had changed quite a bit.

This is also the first time that Manziel has said that returning to the CFL isn’t on the table, something Montreal general manager Kavis Reed said was a possibility when the league booted Manziel out in March.

With the CFL no longer an option, there was plenty of talk about what happened in the AAF and what Manziel will do now.

“Right now with news coming out last week and seeing how quickly the AAF just evaporated, it caught me by surprise a little bit because I was having so much fun in Memphis, probably more fun than I’ve had since my last game at Texas A&M,” he said.

“My plan moving forward is the wake up every day and continue working on my craft, to get back to what I feel like I was – a little bit of a surgeon with the football in my hand. I feel good and I’m going to continue to keep my head down and keep working on what matters the most to me and that’s football.”

Patrick asked him if he’s talked to NFL teams and it doesn’t sound like there’s much going on…

“I’ve kind of left a lot of it up to my agent. I’ve had times over the last two years where I’ve had people talking to me and you get some interviews and you sit down and talk with some people and it’s really easy to get your hopes up,” Manziel said.

“Right now I have open communication with some coaches in the league and I’m trying not to get too up about it or anything that comes my way. I’m taking it day-by-day and trying to make the best of what’s going on.”

Then there was this:

“I actually go by ‘John’ these days. I’m just kind of turning over the page and moving forward a little bit,” Manziel said.

Goodbye, once and for all, John Manziel. There weren’t many on-field memories as a professional in Canada but there was plenty of hype.

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