Although initially it wasn’t taken seriously, the multiple sources confirm it’s happening: The New England Patriots are bringing in Johnny Manziel for a visit, which means that picking the Texas A&M quarterback in the draft shouldn’t come as too much of a shock if he goes to the Northeast.
Manziel will visit with the Patriots which means that if they’re interested in making him the backup to Tom Brady, they’ll have to somehow trade up in the draft or close some sort of deal with one of the higher picks, because the Patriots are picking 29th, and it doesn’t seem Manziel will be allowed to fall that far with quite a few teams in need of a starting quarterback and willing to take a shot at someone coming out of college.
He isn’t the only college quarterback the Patriots have met with, as Blake Bortles out of UCF also paid them a visit, as did other Knights players. Is Manziel being set up to become the heir of Tom Brady? Probably not, but it still adds some interest and a sort of twist to the upcoming draft. Maybe with Ryan Mallett, the current Brady backup, hitting free agency in 2014, the Patriots are already thinking about the next guy in line to sit on the bench behind Brady.
Sometimes these meetings are only about due diligence and possibly picking the brains of top prospects about certain things, like the spread offense when it comes to Manziel. It will be quite complicated for New England to sign him unless they make a few moves to get higher, but stranger things have happened.
Manziel played for the Aggies in two seasons, leading them to Bowl wins in the Cotton Bowl and the Chick-Fil-A Bowl. He won the Heisman trophy for the 2012 season, the first ever Freshman to accomplish that and finished in the All-SEC First Team in both seasons, helping A&M move into the SEC without anything holding them back.