April 20, 2024

Weeks of speculation led up to an interesting first round of the 2014 NFL Draft in which the Cleveland Browns selected Johnny Manziel with the 22nd overall pick. Already acclaimed to be the starter that night, it wouldn’t be the case for 15 up-and-down weeks of football until the former Texas A&M Aggie’s name was called.

Today, on this gloomy Sunday the 14th of December, Jonathan Paul Manziel, better known as Johnny Football, will make his first start as quarterback of the Cleveland Browns against the Cincinnati Bengals at First Energy Stadium. The man has been talked about since he was just a freshman in college and his actions on and off of the football field truly get the people going. There’s Johnny-Lovers and Manziel-Haters but very few in-betweeners. This kid’s got style, he’s got speed and he’s got the edge needed to play football in the NFL.

Today’s your day, Mr. Manziel. This is the start of your beginning here in Cleveland. The first compilation of hopefully many successful years with you at the helm here in Browns Town.

Now, no one said it was going to be easy. You’ll have giant target on your back because every player defense would love nothing more than to absolutely throw you to the turf and flash up the unoriginal and not funny *Money Manziel* as a celebration. That’s your thing, bro. So don’t give ’em the opportunity.

And oh by the way, this game actually matters. If the Browns win these final three games to finish this season at 10-6, there is a chance they make the playoffs. Even if they don’t, the Johnny Football hype rides through the cold winter, through the Spring and Summer and Progressive Field, right to training camp next season where it’ll be Johnny Football’s show and nobody else’s.

So go out there today and kick some ass like we all know you can. Make Cleveland your home and embrace these people that love you so much. Like any sports town, we can be your best friend or your worst enemy depending on how but play. But Cleveland isn’t just any sports town, we have the best, the loudest and the most passionate fans there are. Love it.

-Zach Shafron

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