Today, everyone knows Johnny Manziel. Johnny Football, the Heisman contender who knocked off No. 1 Alabama in Tuscaloosa. But just two years ago, Manziel was an unheralded three-star recruit who some felt wasn't tall enough to be a big-time quarterback. Take a look back at our high school scouting report on Manziel. While it was hard to predict he'd have this kind of immediate success, it's clear from the writeup that in the proper system, he could thrive.
Johnny Manziel scouting report:
This guy is a fantastic athlete so much so that depending on the school he could be offered as a secondary player or wide receiver as well as dual-threat quarterback. Manziel has just adequate height, but a strong frame with solid bulk at this stage. He is a quick-twitch athlete with terrific speed and quickness for a QB. He is the ideal spread offense prospect especially any scheme that is going to heavily rely on their QB for designed runs.
As a passer, he has a sandlot feel to him. He is super-competitive and he flicks the ball to short and intermediate areas of the field. Shows adequate accuracy, but with most gunslingers he does not always have his feet set or balanced when delivering the ball. Most of his passing attempts are going to come when on the move either purposely or as the result of making something happen. The ball comes out quickly, but also low and he lacks an over-the-top release you would like to see from a QB on the shorter side. His release is reminiscent of Case Keenum at Houston. He can make throws down the sideline and to deeper areas of the field, but this is not where he is most experienced in the passing game.
Manziel's strength lies in his legs. He can really motor and shows excellent initial quickness and change-of-direction and he is very difficult to handle in space. He is a guy that you must decide to load the box against to defend his running ability or worry about him getting on the perimeter. He is very creative and instinctive as a runner and he is also tough. Will lower his shoulder and is capable of breaking tackles, getting into space and then taking it the distance. Depending on Manziel's development as a passer and who is pursuing him will ultimately decide what position he lands at. Nevertheless, Manziel has many positives and is an exciting prospect. Spread offense schools should be all over him.