As Browns' Training Camp Opens, Haslam Publicly Speaks On Manziel's Party Persona
Browns Owner Jimmy Haslam III "weighed in on Johnny Manziel's rock-star lifestyle for the first time Saturday and issued a stern warning to his rookie quarterback," according to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland PLAIN DEALER. Haslam said, "I don't want to wear this subject out. Johnny said it himself. He made some mistakes. We expect better from him. I'm sure he'll perform now. We're anxious to see what he can do on the field, which is what really counts." Haslam said he hopes Manziel can "pattern himself after" pro athletes such as Cavaliers F LeBron James, Patriots QB Tom Brady, Broncos QB Peyton Manning and Yankees SS Derek Jeter, who "make their news on the field not off the field." Manziel said, "I absolutely agree with Mr. Haslam that I can learn from guys like that. ... I need to mature and I have done some immature things but moving forward I'm going to try and mature and get better and handle myself better as a professional." Haslam indicated that the Browns "are working with Manziel to give him the guidance he needs." Meanwhile, Haslam said of his deal with federal prosecutors to pay a $92M penalty in the Pilot Flying J investigation, "It cost all of us dearly. ... We're glad to get this chapter behind us and move on" (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 7/27). Cabot also wrote under the header, "Browns 'Alarmed' By Some Of Johnny Manziel's Behavior, Concerned It's Set Him Back In QB Competition, Sources Say" (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 7/26). PRO FOOTBALL TALK's Darin Gantt wrote Haslam's words "should serve as a stern warning to Manziel" (PROFOOTBALLTALK.com, 7/26).
JOHNNY COME LATELY: The PLAIN DEALER's Cabot reported a crowd of about 4,000 on Saturday "turned out for Manziel's first training camp practice, and many wore No. 2 Manziel jerseys" (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 7/27). In Cleveland, Bill Livingston reported fans arrived at the Browns' practice facility "hours before the gates opened." One fan said, "I got here at 2:30 a.m. I slept in a chair I brought with me" (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 7/27).