SBD/June 30, 2014/Marketing and Sponsorship

Manziel Films First Commercial Amid Reports Browns Asked Him To Tone Down Partying

Manziel said what he does off the field will not jeopardize his team
Browns QB Johnny Manziel spent yesterday afternoon "filming his first commercial as a pro," providing endorsement for Collection Auto Group in a deal arranged by LRMR Management Founder Maverick Carter, who is Heat F LeBron James' childhood friend, according to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland PLAIN DEALER. LRMR is the marketing firm that reps both James and Manziel. Collection Auto Group Owner Bernie Moreno said, "The connection actually started with Lebron and Maverick Carter. They've been phenomenal clients of ours for the last nine years, even after he moved to Miami -- not only LeBron but his friends and associates. He's been a super-loyal client and it was a natural for when they got Johnny to really present it to us and give us that opportunity." He added, "To have Johnny be able to do his first commercial in Cleveland with us, with our company, he's a really, really nice guy and he's doing a great job. ... I think he brings a credibility. We couldn't ask for a bigger endorser than that." Cabot noted Manziel will "do a few other marketing deals for Carter during his six weeks off and also spend time back home in Texas before returning to Cleveland for the start of training camp July 26" (CLEVELAND.com, 6/29).

TIME TO TONE THINGS DOWN? ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported a recent video of Manziel that quickly spread on social media did not "sit well" with Browns Owner Jimmy Haslam. Manziel in the video is seen holding money in his hand "acting like he couldn’t hear because he had too much cash in his ear and he appeared not to be sober." Haslem told his staff to "at least have a talk with Johnny about being more savvy as it deals with social media." ESPN's Dan Graziano asked, "Did these people all just arrive in a spaceship two weeks ago? Everybody knew what Johnny Manziel was when they drafted him." ESPN's Phil Savage said the Browns coaches and GM Ray Farmer have been giving Manziel "these instructions behind the scenes -- 'Hey, we want you to tone it down, etc, etc.,' -- and he continued to do it. Now the owner wants to get involved, and that's where it becomes problematic for your management" ("NFL Insiders," ESPN2, 6/27). Manziel on Friday said, "I don't think I'm doing anything wrong. I'm going out. Everybody goes out on the weekends and enjoys their life and lives their life and just for them, they don't have people that when they walk into a place pull out their phones and all they want to do is follow me around and record everything, so my situation is unique and different and now more than ever I've seen that it's an every weekend thing wherever I'm at." He added, "I'm not doing anything that's putting myself in a harmful situation. I'm not doing anything that's putting my team or jeopardizing what I do here throughout the week, or what I'm looking forward to doing this season" (CLEVELAND.com, 6/27). ESPN.com's Pat McManamon wrote Manziel will "learn quickly -- if he hasn't already -- that he is responsible for his own actions, and there is nothing difficult about acting with class." Perhaps "that will come with maturity." Maybe Manziel "enjoys this image he projects; he sure doesn't hide from it" (ESPN.com, 6/27).
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