Take a good hard look at the face of that guy in the picture above. Got it?
Okay, now without factoring in that he is Johnny Football, and he could hook you up with sweet tickets, would you trust him with your daughter? Or is he one of those guys that you would like to punch in the face for no apparent reason at all. Does that ever happen to you? You’re out somewhere and you see some guy that annoys you for some reason causing you to lock in like Tom Cruise on a MiG in Top Gun (named after the man who designed it, Mikoyan Gurevich, by the way, first two letters of first name, first letter of last name, very clever Soviets). Anyway, is Johnny Manziel that guy?
I’m wondering what the veterans players are thinking about Johnny? After the “party in Vegas” picture came out, it was like, big deal. Then the “swan pic” with the bottle of champagne came out, as if Johnny was snubbing his nose at us to give us something to talk about. Like the conversation right before the picture was taken went like this. Johnny walks onto the pool deck and spots the Swan, in the midst of a slug of champagne. Talking with his mouth half full, causing some spillage, Johnny, spouts off, “Dude, no freaking way. That’s my money shot. They want something to talk about, I’ll give it to them. Get a shot of me and that swan.” Johnny’s buddy, “Yo football, how about some hot chicks in there.” “Nah, just me and this bottle of Dom and that swan. Classic.” Now at this point, I’m thinking no way on the daughter, but also no on the punch to the face. Is it possible that Johnny isn’t annoying when filtered through the lens of “what if that was my boy” – part of my inner circle? Let’s examine a bit further.
For the final test let’s talk money phone. To watch this on Instagram via Bleacher Report or Fansided is almost painful. A wasted Manziel, clearly not taking care of his body or mind, not digging into the playbook, not an image that conjures up someone doing what it takes to be a champion. This does not live up to our expectations. That’s the fan lens, and for that, it feels like we’re back to the loud guy who is annoying you and your friends at the bar. But wait a minute, let’s look through a different lens. Imagine this same scene but change one thing, you and your boys are at the bar clowning around, and someone dials up the ole’ money phone. In that context, it was funny, really funny.
So before we get to hypocritical maybe we should look at these events through our “guys having fun” lens. I laughed at Weddding Crashers. I laughed at Hangover. I didn’t laugh at Hangover II and III because they sucked, but I laughed at these R rated comedies because they remind me of what it’s really like to hang out with your inner circle. Guys like to clown and by nature are pretty immature. When I was 22, I remember spending nine straight hours with my buddies Joe and Scott slamming beers and coming up with different reasons why Neil Diamond sucks. Maybe, as it turns out, that when you and your friends, or me and my friends are out somewhere clowning, drinking or being loud, we are the guy that someone else wants to punch in the face for no good reason at all. So I think Johnny is a “Good Time Charlie” and it would be fun to hang out with him. But having said all that, be clear on this, if he ever showed up at my house to pick up my daughter, I’d be sure to be cleaning my gun when he got there. In this case, Mike Pettine is Daddy, the Cleveland Browns are his daughter and his .44 caliber is sitting on the table. Something tells me Johnny is in for a little talk.
Oh yeah, for some reason, that has nothing to do with anything, I think Johnny drinks 22 ounce PBR’s sometimes while wearing mesh trucker ball caps. Just saying.