The 2014 NFL Draft is set to take place in May, and uncertainty remains over who will be taken with the No.1 overall pick. Johnny Manziel is among the potential candidates to go to the Houston Texans at the top spot.
Manziel is competing with four others to be the first pick. Quarterbacks Teddy Bridegwater and Blake Bortles are also in consideration to go first. If Houston doesn’t fall in love with any of the signal callers, they could go with defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, who’s widely considered to be the most talented player in the draft.
Before "Johnny Football" performed at the NFL Scouting Combine, where he was among the most impressive prospects, he said not being taken No.1 would be the “worst decision they've (the Texans) ever made.” Manziel would likely be a popular choice, given his star status and the fact that he played college football nearby, at Texas A&M. However, Houston head coach Bill O’Brien has questions about the quarterback’s work ethic and intangibles, according to former NFL scout Russ Lande.
Even if the Texans pass on Manziel, he’s almost certain to go near the top of the first round. Teams with four of the top five draft picks are looking for a new quarterback.
There’s a good chance Manziel will be selected within the first three selections. The Jacksonville Jaguars are in desperate need of a quarterback, having had no success with Blaine Gabbert in the last three seasons. The organization is reportedly interested in Manziel, after drafting former Aggies offensive lineman Luke Joeckel with their first-round selection last year.
Jacksonville general manager David Caldwell said that Joeckel has spoken highly of the 21-year-old. The last four mock drafts at nfl.com have all had Manziel going to the Jaguars.
The Oakland Raiders (No.5) and the Minnesota Vikings (No.8) are the other likely landing spots for Manziel. Both teams started three different quarterbacks in 2013, and could take Manziel, if he’s available. At No.4 overall, the Cleveland Browns are also looking to improve the most important position on the field, but Manziel doesn’t appear to be their top choice. Daniel Jeremiah of nfl.com told “The Dan Patrick Show” that the Browns prefer Fresno State’s Derek Carr.
Most teams and draft experts believe Manziel should be taken somewhere within the first few picks. The former Aggies quarterback, though, does have some detractors. ESPN’s Ron Jaworski made headlines by saying he didn’t think Manziel was worthy of being taken on the first day of the draft.
"I wouldn't take him in the first three rounds” the former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback told WPEN-FM. “That's my opinion. It's incomplete right now. But he has not done a whole lot to me."
In his two seasons playing college football, Manziel was as good as anyone in the country. He became the first ever freshman to win the Heisman Trophy. As a sophomore, he threw for 4,114 yards, 37 touchdowns and 13 interceptions.