With just a few days to go until the NFL draft, we still have a lot of guessing going on in regards to the first round. One position in particular is probably messing with the stability of the first round more than any other - quarterback. Blake Bortles, Teddy Bridgewater, Derek Carr and of course, Johnny Manziel, all factor into what happens.
If you're a Dallas fan, you want as many QBs to go as early as possible. That would drive down some of the other players like Aaron Donald, Anthony Barr or Zack Martin. Which is what we want, of course, unless you are in the camp of drafting Johnny Manziel. In that case, I doubt he'll slide to #16. And there's some evidence going around that he could be towards the top of the picks.
THIS JUST IN: Chris Mortensen reports he expects Browns to draft QB Johnny Manziel at No. 4 if he's still there. pic.twitter.com/iQNNfNDg2H— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) May 5, 2014
Chris Mortensen isn't the end all, be all of prognosticators, but I'd doubt he'd put something up so specific if he didn't have some sources. Then again, it could be bait for someone to trade up who might really want Manziel. The funny thing is, people have been spreading rumors that Dallas will try and do that. Jim Nantz for one, but then he quickly backpedaled. Nantz initially said:
"You hear things about Johnny Manziel going No.1 to Houston; you hear him definitely going to the Browns. I've even heard him going to the Oakland Raiders. I've heard rumors that the Cowboys will do anything they can possibly do to move up and draft him. That was in the body of that content."
After headlines appeared everywhere that Dallas was going to try and move up to get Manziel according to Jim Nantz, he quickly walked it back.
"Rumor — the fact that everybody interpreted that little chat I had on a radio station in Cleveland, and took it to the level they did, is just astonishing to me," said Nantz. "I didn’t say I have a scoop…I said I heard rumors for a month," said Nantz, who was at the Final Four one month ago.
But to this day, people out there still believe that Jerry Jones will mortgage the farm to get Manziel.
Q: I am not a Cowboys fan, and I will never pretend to be one. I am a loyal 49ers fan. However, the reports that Jerry Jones is going to do anything and everything to draft Johnny Manziel are egregious. How would a team that already has a top-10 QB and has other pressing needs -- for example, an entire new defense -- dare waste a pick on a QB? If he takes Manziel, I don't know how Cowboys fans can honestly continue to give him a pass or even remain fans. Matthew in Richmond, Virginia
[John Clayton] A: I agree with you 100 percent. I sure hope that's the marketing part of Jerry talking, not the personnel part. Such a move would be insane. Manziel is going to go in the top seven. Jones would have to give up too many draft choices at a time the Cowboys have been hamstrung in free agency because of cap problems. He is a smart businessman. I think the Manziel talk is just to throw off the Houston Texans. The Texans' brand in the state of Texas would grow substantially if Manziel were Houston's quarterback. It could challenge the Cowboys' brand in the state.
I'll go ahead and say it, the Cowboys are not trading up into the Top 10 to get Manziel. Basically what happened is someone asked Jerry Jones about Manziel, being Jerry he said he thought he was a great player, and suddenly the Cowboys are packaging up all their picks to get him.
Eh, don't count on it. And as for Manziel falling to #16 or even close, almost no one in the past week is buying that.
[Gil] Brandt: "I don't think Teddy Bridgewater falls to the second round. I think Johnny Manziel will go in the top five, but not number one."
As fun as it is to speculate, when it comes down to it, Johnny Manziel will not be a Cowboy. And if he is, then I will eat a big ol' helping of crow.