BEREA, Ohio – Johhny Manziel is one day away from summer vacation.
On Friday, Manziel unapologetically said that all the times he’s been photographed in vacation mode have come on his own time.
"Just my weekends aren’t what I’m doing with my life," Manziel said at the NFL’s Rookie Symposium. "That’s two days. Five days a week I’ve been in here working…studying. Nothing I’m doing on the weekends affects my job."
Later, he said, "I am not going to change for anybody. I am going to enjoy my time off. I work very hard at my job which doesn’t get reported and won’t get reported."
He said his jaunts over the last four weekends have become social media fodder because of the "people who pull out their phones and want to follow me around."
The Browns haven’t let Manziel talk to the media since late May. Friday’s interview was his first since the "money phone" video hit Instagram two weekends ago, and Manziel said he wouldn’t talk about that "because it’s in the past."
He said he realizes he’s "the low man on the totem pole" as he prepares for a training camp battle trying to climb the Cleveland Browns depth chart and deemed the attention he’s been getting as unfair to his teammates, who he said shouldn’t have to answer questions about him.
"They’re tired of the hype and I’m tired of it, too," Manziel said.
It’s not going away — and Manziel realizes that, too.
"I’m just like everyone else," he said of his experience catching up with friends and getting valuable non-football advice at the NFL’s annual symposium. "I’m not any different except things get blown out of proportion and people seem to follow me."
Manziel said he’ll spend his three or four weeks off continuing to work out and work on his game, catching up with family in Texas "before my sister goes back to school," and has some marketing commitments "with Maverick Carter," of the LeBron James-sponsored LRMR marketing firm with whom Manziel signed before the draft.
"I want to wake up one week and not have my name going through something," he said. "I’m working on getting better at that."