Forget about football–where Johnny Manziel has had trouble transitioning from amateur superstar to professional competent–but what about life? The lives of prodigies in sports and entertainment often turn sour with great speed when expectations aren’t lived up to. What starts out as fun becomes a brutal regimen of self-destruction–trace the pattern from such disparate characters as Judy Garland to enigmatic Miami Dolphins running back Ricky Williams. And those two had great career successes, something that looks increasingly likely to elude Manziel, the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner who warms the bench for the Cleveland Browns.
Manziel had to apologize for missing team obligations last Saturday after a late night out pounding drinks. Manziel’s self-recriminating textbook apology went like this: “It’s about being accountable and doing what I’m gonna say instead of looking like a jackass.” After the apology he headed straight for Miami and LeBron James’s birthday party, where the partying was high octane. (One thing for sure about James and Manziel: neither of these high-profile athletes really wants to be in Cleveland. No matter what they say.) Manziel is always a target for criticism, ridicule and envy, but these days a lot of people are wondering if Manziel isn’t taking direct aim at himself.