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Friday, May 9, 2014
Manziel's slide costs Gruden a steak dinner

By Rich Cimini

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Jon Gruden owes me.

A week ago, the former coach-turned-ESPN analyst conducted a pre-draft conference call with reporters from across the country. I was one of them, hoping to hear his unique insights on the draft -- specifically, the quarterback prospects.

When it was my turn on the call, I asked Gruden, "If Johnny Manziel happens to slip to 18 to the Jets, what would you do?"

Gruden replied ever-so-confidently: "If Johnny Manziel is there at No. 18, I'll give you my cell phone number and take you out to a steak dinner."

I'll be honest, I didn't think Johnny Football would be around for the Jets, although I did think he'd go lower than expected. Sure enough, there he was, sitting there for the Jets at 18. They passed, selecting safety Calvin Pryor. Manziel tumbled to 22, where his fall was stopped by the Cleveland Browns, who traded up.

I'm expecting to hear from Coach Gruden, and I'm starting to scout out steak houses in Manhattan. ESPN's Monday Night crew will be in town for Week 3, Jets vs. Bears, so that'll be a good time to break bread. My appetite will be waiting.