Johnny Manziel Shows Heart but Has Rough Montreal Alouettes Debut Throwing 4 Interceptions in First Pro Football Start Since 2015

Johnny Manziel had an inauspicious start in his CFL debut.
(Photo: Paul Chiasson, AP)

Johnny Manziel’s Canadian Football League debut with the Montreal Alouettes could have been better.

In making his first professional football start since December 2015 while with the Cleveland Browns, Manziel threw four interceptions … all of which came in the first half of a 50-11 loss to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

It did not go well from the start. Two of Manziel’s first four passes were picked off by his former CFL team. A third interception came early in the second quarter. The fourth interception came late in the second quarter with his team down 35-3 and the game already out of reach.

Manziel’s first pass attempt was a completion on a shovel pass to B.J. Cunningham, but it went for a 5-yard loss. On the Alouettes’ next play, Manziel threw into coverage and was intercepted.

Following a blocked punt returned for another Tiger-Cats touchdown, Manziel threw interception No. 2, though it would be hard to blame him for this pick. After showing some of his familiar scrambling skills while eluding a handful of Hamilton pass rushers, Manziel’s throw bounced off the hands of running back Tyrell Sutton and into the arms of Tiger-Cats defensive back Jumal Rolle.

Rolle also collected Manziel’s third interception. A clearly frustrated Manziel made the tackle on the play. Manziel finished the game with two tackles.

While under pressure in the pocket, Manziel chucked pick No. 4. Manziel never had more than two interceptions in an NFL game (he had two picks in his first NFL start, a 30-0 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals in 2014).

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SOURCE: USA Today – Jim Reineking