by Jules Gonsoulin
It is never too early to start talking about football, and the NFL draft is always an excuse to analyze and discuss players. The draft doesn’t take place until May 8, but that has not stopped analysts from scrutinizing players and teams, riling up fans eager to see how their teams will fare. For those caught up in the methodical rhetoric and endless statistics, this article should provide some direction, particularly pertaining to Johnny Manziel and this year’s quarterback picks.
This year’s draft should feature some talented quarterbacks, including Manziel of Texas A&M, who has been highly scrutinized due to his off-field antics and poor reputation. In terms of his skills, he performed well at the NFL combine, recording a 4.56 second 40-yard dash on his second attempt, which is almost exactly the same time as Carolina quarterback Cam Newton. He was the fourth fastest runner in the draft, behind Virginia Tech’s Logan Thomas, Miami’s Stephen Morris and South Carolina’s Connor Shaw. Manziel has been criticized for his height and hand size, but size-wise, he is comparable to Drew Brees, which can’t be a bad thing.
The Southeastern Conference is continually known for producing incredible showings in the draft, and that reputation will rest partially on Manziel’s shoulders. Many are predicting him to go No. 1 overall, and stay in the state of Texas, playing for the Houston Texans.
Manziel is in good company when it comes to quarterbacks in the draft. Other great quarterbacks include UCF’s Blake Bortles, Clemson’s Tajh Boyd and LSU’s Zach Mettenberger.