Johnny Manziel could be back with Browns next month, team GM says

Cleveland Browns GM says he doesn't 'think it's in doubt' that Johnny Manziel will return to the team soon

Cleveland Browns General Manager Ray Farmer expressed confidence quarterback Johnny Manziel would be back with the team for next month's workouts.

Farmer told reporters Monday he doesn't "think it's in doubt" that Manziel would return even though the quarterback remained in a private treatment facility. Ultimately, Manziel's participation in April's scheduled workouts is out of the team's control, Farmer said.

"I'm not the point person in that," Farmer told reporters at the NFL annual owners' meetings in Phoenix. "So I would defer to those kind of controlling his care and let them decide what that looks likes."

Farmer is confident Manziel will be able to challenge for the Browns' starting quarterback job when training camp starts but said the focus for now is to make sure the former Heisman Trophy winner is healthy and in a good state of mind.

"We're definitely focused on his health and his well-being and we definitely want to support him in every way possible,” Farmer said. "Part two of that is that inevitably he's going to have to continue to perform and show development and growth as a player.... We all want to focus the opportunity on now.”

Manziel, who entered rehab on Jan. 28, as been criticized for his partying lifestyle reputation. In the past, he has posted photos of himself on Twitter and Instagram drinking at parties.

A star quarterback at Texas A&M who was drafted 22nd overall by the Browns in 2014, Manziel appeared in five games for the Browns last season, passing for 175 yards.

With Brian Hoyer, last year's starter, joining the Houston Texans, Manziel is expected to be in the hunt for the No. 1 quarterback job.

"If he's prepared and he demonstrates the things that he needs to demonstrate, then yeah, he should get every opportunity to be the guy," Farmer said. "Do I believe in his skill set and think that he can do the job? Sure. But I think you have to give guys an opportunity to grow and learn.''

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
53°