His star burned bright and it burnt hot, but it burnt out, now sports are missing the Rockstar edge Johnny Football brought.
Rehab; a right of passage for the members of blue-blooded families with no pressure and too much time/leisure on their hands. Having been a couple times myself, I was distraught when Johnny Football checked himself in to the same place I had gone only 7 months prior. We would have been boys, and possibly even roommates. But what makes Jonny Manziel an absolute legend is not the fact that he went to rehab, nor the fact that he literally disguised himself with a wig et all to gamble, or the fact that he literally had to throw Instagram models off of him at pool parties…nay. What makes Johnny Football a legend is the fact that he made it to the top, completely fucked everything up and yet still remains completely unapologetic about it.
Johnny wasn't your typical draft prospect coming out of college. Most players come from impoverished families or at-risk backgrounds and seek football as a medium to get themselves out of poverty and live the American Dream. Many NFL players buy their mothers a house and give back to their community. Not Johnny. His family made bank as Texan oil tycoons, so while the rest of the team was resting up and watching film prior to the big game, ole Johnny was sitting courtside at a Heat game and ripping gators afterward at the club with Drake (allegedly). Absolute fucking legend. And when Stephen A. Smith starting talking shit about his playboy/ party lifestyle on ESPN, did Johnny Football tone it down?
Instead he talked more shit, did more raucous antics at bars and clubs and did the now famous “money Manziel” thingy with his finger. Johnny Manziel is like the honey badger of sports; he just doesn’t give a Santa Clause fuck.
My personal favorite Johnny Football moment is when he held a stack of ones to his face (obviously intended for strippers) and said “I cant hear you, there’s too much fucking money in my face”.
And people gave him shit for that…but why? Because of affluenza? What’s the alternative? povertenza? Absurd. Johnny is Johnny because he never had to worry about the money. He did it right…he had a fucking good time while it lasted. If had this been the Era of NY Jets legend Joe Namath, Johnny Football and Broadway Joe would be ripping fat lines with Frank Sinatra and the gang at Joe’s Upper East Side hang out, going to practice the next day and getting CTE on the weekends. But alas, society has gotten soft, and having a good time is frowned upon. Just look at Johnny’s Instagram stories of late. Does Johnny football give a shit about Covid? Negative…he’s playing golf with his boys, crushing mango White Claws (which is kinda soft) and hanging out on yachts. He’s basically retired, and still gets paid by the Browns for having shit the bed. Karl Marx would be rolling in his communal grave right now if he knew that people were getting payed millions of dollars to throw an oval piece of leather, but to a guy like Johnny, who pretty much humiliated himself and the sport of football (yet is still getting payed), to that I say bravo Johnny….Bravo.
So next time you throw up in an Uber, black out during a hinge date, max out your credit card, get blocked by your coke dealer for excessive phone calls, or get so drunk that you buy a timeshare in Iowa with three strangers….just do the Johnny Manziel approach and give zero fucks. Never apologize for being a derelict, or a fuck up. Nay, elevate debauchery to an art form, like Johnny Manziel, Football’s last and arguably greatest Rockstar. So to all college football players out there, I offer this challenge; who will be the hero who (much like that Celtics player) will go on a chooch bender the night before and go off on national television? Who will give so little shits, yet still perform well enough to end up playing professional sports in a booming metropolis such as CLEVELAND? If I had the physique and the athletic prowess, this is a challenge I would gladly accept, as I basically have half of it down. But dreams don’t always come true so vicariously through Johnny Football it will have to be.