At the NFL Combine, each team is allotted 60 15-minute interviews to give them an opportunity to speak with potential prospects. Even though he is likely a top-ten selection, the Dallas Cowboys, who pick 16th in the draft, are spending one of those selections on Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel. From Johnny Football's point of view, playing in Dallas would be a dream come true.
"Me growing up as a Cowboys fan – I was born at halftime of a Cowboys game – that would almost be a folktale in the correct direction. We'd have to call that Johnny something else. I don’t know what it would be." - Johnny Manziel
While an opportunity to speak with the Cowboys might be something of a personal fulfillment for Manziel, from the team's perspective you have to ask if this is a wise investment of a limited resource. With only 60 interviews, perhaps it would be more prudent to spend them on players who are likely to be realistic targets. There are over 335 athletes at the combine.
Not only is it unlikely that Johnny Football will last until the 16th pick, the team has higher priorities. Team owner Jerry Jones indicated as much recently while discussing potential targets for the team in the 2014 NFL Draft.
"I don't anticipate drafting a quarterback high with where we are with Romo, especially one that might can play immediately and several of these guys in today's NFL are playing pretty quick, [Seattle's Russell] Wilson, and [San Francisco's Colin] Kaepernick, and those guys who are move-around types, some of those guys who take a little more seasoning are your traditional quarterbacks, so all of that would figure in," - Jerry Jones
Throw in the fact that Dallas signed its QB, Tony Romo, to a $106 million dollar contract extension during the 2013 off season and it does not make much sense to invest a high draft pick in a quarterback. It makes me wonder why.
Maybe Jerry likes the publicity that comes along with the interview. Maybe it's just due diligence in case Manziel suddenly slides on draft day. One thing we know is that Jerry Jones is a fan of Manziel, and Jason Garret is too, as he mentioned yesterday.
"He's a great football player and someone I admire a great deal," Garrett said Thursday. "If you're a fan of football and you watch Texas A&M play, he's something else. He's done an amazing job in a short period of time during his career for that program. He's really fun to watch.
"I think with all young players, particularly at that position and studying the game and working hard at the game is really important and understanding those kind of work habits. If you look at the best players who ever played that position, they're the best workers in that building. That made them great leaders. And that made them great players.
"So I would give that advice to anybody. And certainly everybody is excited to see where he goes and what he does because he is such a great football player."