The Browns released a statement from new director of football operations Sashi Brown on Tuesday that expressed disappointment in Manziel but stopped short of saying the quarterback’s run in Cleveland is over.
“We’ve been clear about expectations for our players on and off the field. Johnny’s continual involvement in incidents that run counter to those expectations undermines the hard work of his teammates and the reputation of our organization,” Brown said. “His status with our team will be addressed when permitted by league rules. We will have no further comment at this time.”
The reference to league rules points to the fact that the Browns do not have the salary cap space to release Manziel on Feb. 8, the day after the Super Bowl and the first day they can do so. The move will take place when the new NFL year starts March 9, according to the source. Releasing Manziel in February would count $4.6 million against the cap, and due to the cap’s machinations, the Browns do not have that space — and will not have it in February. The cap will increase in March, which will allow them to release Manziel then.
The Browns can also try to trade him when the league year begins, but likely will encounter difficulty doing so because of his off-field issues.
Manziel’s two seasons in Cleveland were turbulent, as off-field issues overshadowed his on-field performances.
Manziel famously promised that he and the Browns would “wreck this league” on draft night in 2014, but Manziel never came close to realizing the promise he showed in college.
The Heisman Trophy winner started eight games for the Browns, and he appeared in 15. He completed 57 percent of his passes, threw 7 touchdowns, 7 interceptions and had a 74.4 rating with a 2-6 record as a starter.
Source: ESPN Author: Pat McManamonESPN Staff Writer