When discussing whether or not former Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel will transition well from college to the NFL, one important thing to consider is his behavior off the playing field. Whether he's spraying champagne in Las Vegas or going to the strip club with his good friend Aubrey Graham (better known by his rap name, Drake), Manziel is always being criticized for his weekend activities.
Manziel's behavior has been under scrutiny since his Heisman Trophy campaign in 2012. Critics of Manziel did not want to award him the trophy solely because of his excessive partying, arguing that there is a certain behavioral standard that goes along with the prestigious award. Manziel won the Heisman that year and rocketed to celebrity status.
Manziel better get ready, because in the NFL he will have tougher critics and a lot more of them. There's a lot of responsibility associated with being a first round draft pick, especially to a struggling team like the Cleveland Browns. Due to his popularity Manziel is going to be the face of the Browns organization for the next few seasons, and he needs to start acting like it.
After a video of him noticeably drunk holding a huge stack of cash surfaced recently, Manziel is under scrutiny again--this time from free agent quarterback and former Browns first round pick Brady Quinn. Quinn was a guest on Sirius XM NFL Radio recently after the video was released, and he scolded the young quarterback for his behavior. Quinn accused Manziel of being disrespectful to Browns owner Jimmy Haslam for not properly acting as the face of the franchise; and he claimed that Manziel is also being unfair to his new teammates, especially the veterans, who are taking good care of themselves and trying to prepare to go out there and win in the fall. The video was not taken or posted by Manziel so it's obviously not an image of himself he was trying to portray, but the fact is he needs to be more careful now.
Manziel obviously enjoys having a good time with his friends, and there's nothing wrong with that as long as it doesn't interfere with his work. The most important thing is that Manziel works hard on improving his game during the offseason. Even though he will be sitting behind quarterback Brian Hoyer at first, Manziel can expect to see a good amount of playing time this season. In order to live up to expectations, Manziel needs to spend extra time this offseason learning the Browns offense, working with his new teammates and receivers to develop a connection, and earning his new team's respect through his hard work and eagerness to improve.
As long as he can put his football career before the partying, Manziel's behavior off the field should not be a cause for much concern; and as long as he stays out of legal trouble, which has not been a problem for him in the past, Manziel's off-the-field behavior should have no affect on his on-the-field performance.