Avoiding circus played role with Manziel

May, 14, 2014
May 14
12:20
PM ET
IRVING, Texas -- In order to avoid some of the circus certainly to be involved in the selection of Johnny Manziel, the Cleveland Browns are limiting access to national media at the team’s rookie mini-camp this weekend.

By doing so, the Browns have created even more of an issue.

Could you imagine the Cowboys ever doing such a thing? Of course not. They would have loved the attention. At least that’s the most commonly held perception.

But speaking on a conference call with season-ticket holders on Tuesday, executive vice president Stephen Jones hinted the circus was part of the reason why the Cowboys passed on Johnny Football in the first round.

The Cowboys had Manziel highly rated on their draft board but opted to take Zack Martin instead.

“We all felt like he’s a great football player,” Jones said. “At the same time a lot about what Johnny is is the ‘it’ factor. I think it will be really hard for a guy like Johnny Manziel to sit on the bench and watch. That was a factor in our decision making. I don’t think he’s like an Aaron Rodgers, who was very patient and watched Brett Favre for two or three years to wait his turn.

“The minute he walks in there’s going to be controversy. In the National Football League we know it, you don’t win every game and have tough ones you lose and quarterbacks are in tough situations.”

Todd Archer

ESPN Dallas Cowboys reporter

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