CFL team worked out Johnny Manziel and passed: 'Too many red flags'

Johnny Manziel reportedly worked out for a CFL team, which passed on signing him. (AP)
Johnny Manziel reportedly worked out for a CFL team, which passed on signing him. (AP)

The Canadian Football League seems perfect for Johnny Manziel’s redemption. It’s where fellow former Heisman Trophy winner Doug Flutie went to resurrect his career. Maybe Manziel could too.

The problem is that teams are still too skeptical about Manziel. Even CFL teams.

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats worked out Manziel in Buffalo last week, according to TSN in Canada. And TSN reported the Tiger-Cats were “convinced he’s not ready to resume his professional career.”

“Too many red flags,” a source said.

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This is from a team that recently hired former Baylor coach Art Briles, who was fired after an investigation into the Baylor athletic department’s handling of sexual assault allegations, only to reverse course when they were criticized for it. Yet, Manziel was too toxic for them.

Manziel seems no closer to being in the NFL than he was the moment the Cleveland Browns cut him, which was May of 2016. Despite a humorous report at this year’s combine of teams showing interest in Manziel, it seems inconceivable that a team would take him on. He was unreliable, uncommitted and didn’t consistently show he was good enough to be an NFL quarterback. He’d have to show he’s more serious about football than partying and also have to show he has improved as a player. He could do both in the CFL, but even the Tiger-Cats apparently questioned whether he wanted to play.

With that door closed, at least with Hamilton, Manziel will have to figure out another path to get into pro football. It’s hard to figure out what that might be.

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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