Thursday, May 23, 2013
Aggie Snapshot: QB Johnny Manziel
By Sam Khan Jr.
During the summer, GigEmNation will take a closer look at returning starters and other key players on the two-deep for Texas A&M -- excluding the Aggies' 2013 recruiting class -- that could make notable impact this fall in our Aggie Snapshot series. Starting with No. 1 De'Vante Harris, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 95 Julien Obioha.
It'll be hard for Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel to duplicate his Heisman-winning season of 2012.
Impact thus far: Manziel did something no Aggie freshman -- and no freshman in college football history -- has done before, win a Heisman Trophy. After winning the starting quarterback job during a competition in fall camp, Manziel gradually got better as the season progressed and wound up tallying an SEC single-season record 5,116 total offensive yards (3,706 passing, 1,410 rushing) and 47 total touchdowns (26 passing, 21 rushing) while leading the Aggies to the nation's No. 3 offense (558.54 yards per game).
Expectations for 2013: This season, the man they call "Johnny Football" is expected to be even better. Specifically, the coaching staff is looking for improvement from Manziel in his understanding and mastery of the Aggies' offense. He is expected to improve as a passer and decision-maker this fall. Can he win another Heisman Trophy? That will likely hinge more on the team's results than simply Manziel's statistical line. He had such an eye-popping season in 2012 that simply putting up those numbers again probably won't be good enough by itself unless the Aggies are SEC champions or playing in the BCS title game.
Best-case scenario in 2013: As many quarterbacks in this style of offense tend to do, Manziel takes off as a passer and puts up even better numbers than last season and approaches the 5,000-yard mark in passing yards. He snags another Heisman Trophy, becoming the second player in history to win it twice in a row after Archie Griffin did it in 1974-75 and perhaps puts himself in position to be a high pick in the 2014 NFL draft, should he choose to declare for early entry.
From No. 1 De'Vante Harris to No. 95 Julien Obioha, GigEmNation is evaluating the Texas A&M two-deep numerically. View the entire Aggie Snapshot series.
Worst-case scenario in 2013: Manziel plateaus in his progression, struggles under the microscope and intense pressure and expectations and finds that opposing defenses have become more astute to defending his repertoire, in the air and on the ground.
Future impact: If Manziel is in Aggieland for a few more years and bypasses declaring early for the draft and improves his game from year-to-year, he has a chance to finish his college career as the best player in program history and perhaps one of the best in college football history. If he's around for at least a couple more seasons and the Aggies continue to compete at a high level, win double-digit games and contend for SEC and national championships, he has a realistic chance at claiming another Heisman Trophy.