Johnny Manziel’s rookie season ended about as badly as it could have ended.
Before Week 17, he was fined for missing a treatment session on Saturday morning at the team’s facility. CBS reported that Manziel threw a party on Friday night, which led to the lateness. There were also reports that wide receiver Josh Gordon — who was deactivated for violating team rules on Sunday — was there.
It later came out that the Browns sent their security detail out looking for Manziel when he didn’t show up to his treatment session.
At a Monday press conference Manziel called reports that he had a party on Friday “100% false.” He had some friends from Texas in town and they went out, but it wasn’t a party, he said, and he just overslept on Sunday.
Here’s how he explained it (via Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com):
“No, absolutely not. I had people in town who were staying with me this week but I mean if three people from Kerrville, Texas, are enough to warrant a party, well it might be, we’re from Kerrville, so … but it’s absolutely ridiculous. I was irate about that yesterday and it’s really shameful that they did report that that way and it was tied directly in with Josh as well.”
He then got introspective at the press conference, saying he needed to stop “looking like a jackass” and take some responsibility.
“I can’t sit here and talk to these mics or these cameras or anything that’s going to do any good. It’s about actions, it’s about being accountable and doing what I’m going to say instead of looking like a jackass.”
“So I’m sorry to these guys that are veterans in this locker room and know what it takes, that I’m having to learn the hard way. At the same time, I’m either going to learn or I’m going to be finding something else to do.”
After his Week 16 injury Manziel vowed to stay focused during the offseason, saying, “I have to take this a lot more seriously. It’s a job for me now.”
Apart from an incident where someone accused Manziel’s entourage of assaulting him (an accusation which was later retracted), Manziel has had a pretty quiet year in Cleveland. For a guy with a reputation for being a partier, this has been the lone partying-based controversy. The more pressing concern is his performance on the field, which was a nightmare in 2014.
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