Johnny Manziel signs with Nike

Updated: March 6, 2014, 9:18 PM ET
By Darren Rovell |

Johnny Football is now property of Nike.

Johnny Manziel, the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner and potential first overall pick in May's NFL draft, informed the world's largest shoe and apparel brand that it had won the sweepstakes to outfit his feet and use him in marketing campaigns, Nike spokesman KeJuan Wilkins confirmed Thursday night.

[+] EnlargeManziel
Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY SportsJohnny Manziel, projected to be a top pick of the NFL draft, has signed a multiyear shoe and marketing contract with Nike, it was confirmed Thursday.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but sources told that it's a multiyear deal that will be the highest price paid for a rookie in this year's class. Manziel's team negotiating the deal included LeBron James' business manager, Maverick Carter, and Fenway Sports Group.

Adidas, Under Armour and New Balance's Warrior brand all submitted bids for Manziel's marketing rights.

Although his future prospects are far from certain, Manziel is the prize rookie of this year's class.

Landing Manziel eventually might lead to Nike using the phrase "Johnny Football." The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office currently is evaluating the application filed by an organization in College Station, Texas, which claims "Johnny Football" does not refer to a living person. Manziel, who filed the application later on, obviously claims otherwise.

Nike has a solid stable of NFL quarterbacks, including Russell Wilson, Colin Kaepernick, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers. It also is the official uniform supplier of the league.

Manziel wore adidas for the two years he was a starter at A&M.

Darren Rovell | email Sports Business reporter



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