Former NFL quarterback and first round draft pick Johnny Manziel made his CFL debut for the Hamilton Tiger Cats last night and Jets fans might be surprised to hear that GM Mike Maccagnan was scheduled to be in the building to scout the disgraced former Cleveland Brown.
In addition to Jets GM Mike Maccagnan, Texans pro scout Chris Blanco is scheduled to be in the press box Friday night at Tim Horton's Field for the preseason debut of Johnny Manziel for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats against the Toronto Argonauts. https://t.co/67Or67TZzB
— Mike Rodak (@mikerodak) June 1, 2018
While the last thing any sane Jets fans wants is a player with Manziel’s off-field history in the locker room, there are a couple of scenarios at work here.
The Jets are currently carrying three quarterbacks in Josh McCown, Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Darnold. After a strong showing in OTA’s, speculation of a Bridgwater trade has already begun to ramp up. If dealing Bridgewater is a foregone conclusion in the mind of Mike Maccagnan, the Jets are likely exploring all options to bring in a third quarterback.
Another possibility is that the Jets view Manziel as a player they may also be able to flip for a draft pick if he plays well in Canada and then the NFL pre-season, allowing them to get something for what is essentially nothing at this point.
It’s not very likely, but in looking again at the possibility of needing a third QB if and when Bridgewater is traded, there’s another quarterback on the Tiger Cats roster with whom Maccagnan is familiar in Dane Evans, who was a tryout player for Gang Green last off-season. With the current landscape among NFL quarterbacks, your third-string guys are going to be lesser-known players such as Evans, who did stick with the Philadelphia Eagles for a short time last season.
While we may not know if the Jets had their eye on any additional Tiger Cat players, we’re pretty comfortable in assuming they weren’t there to scout former Jets GM John Idzik’s favorite receiver in the 2014 class, Jalen Saunders, who was one of the first receivers targeted in the Tiger Cats loss.
Interested in getting a look at how Manziel fared? Click here for the highlights.