A&M's Heisman candidate
“He’s got a big smile, he’s dynamic, he’s unpredictable; I think that’s why everybody likes him,” John Paul said, during a round of golf last Saturday morning before the Aggies played Sam Houston State. “Growing up as kids, who didn’t want to be like that?”
His game needed to mature, too. So his high school offensive coordinator, Julius Scott, trained him to keep his eyes downfield when all seemed lost. They diagnosed blitzes and planned counters. They understood each other, and Manziel became an all-state quarterback, because Scott coached with the same abandon with which Manziel played.
Scott had about 15 route combinations, calling “whatever popped into my mind.” If he wanted to audible, he yelled a player’s name and drew a new route in the air. Or if he wanted Manziel to freelance, he just nodded to him.
Some teams found the best way to defend Manziel was to drop eight players into coverage, make him wait, be patient. To not let Johnny go, go.
He adjusted and became comfortable in the pocket. During one game that Texas A&M had scouted, Manziel threw 75 passes, completing 41, for 503 yards and 4 touchdowns. The Aggies offered him a scholarship.There is much more.
Johnny Manziel is a very exciting player to watch. He was able to frustrate Alabama's defense which is one of the top units in the country. He tends to read and innovate rather than drop into predictable patterns. That makes it hard for defensive coaches to draw up a game plan for him. I think one of the most valuable characteristics of a quarterback is vision. To not just see the field, but to instinctively know where the opponents are and how much time you have to deliver the ball. That involves the time you have in the pocket and the time the window is open for the receiver to catch the ball.
I am a Texas graduate, but I will be rooting for this guy when the votes are taken.
BTW, the description of Manzeil's off the field problems sounds like ADHD to me. It is too bad Adderall is a banned substance in some programs and the NFL. I am not a professional, but it would not hurt to have him tested. One aspect of ADHD is that people who have do well under stress because it is like the rest of the world is catching up with them.