Jim Brown addresses Johnny Manziel’s alleged alcohol issues

Browns icon Jim Brown weighed in on the alleged issues Johnny Manziel has with alcohol.
Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

By Jason Rowan

It’s never been explicitly confirmed that Johnny Manziel’s off-the-field troubles stem from alcohol abuse or overuse, but Cleveland Browns great Jim Brown addressed those alleged issues while praising the second-year quarterback for his play in last Sunday’s 24-10 win over the San Francisco 49ers.

Calling Manziel one of the “biggest fighters” on the team, the Browns’ most iconic player in team history said the quarterback deserves high marks for his play in a game in which he went 21-for-31 passing for 271 yards with a touchdown and an interception, good for a respectable 92.1 quarterback rating.

“Johnny had a good start in proving he can play the position,” Brown told Northeast Ohio Media Group via telephone. “He’s a great athlete who can run and throw the ball. I’m glad the coaching staff is giving him a chance.”

Regarding Manziel’s alleged issues with alcohol — he sought in-patient treatment during the offseason but it was never disclosed exactly for what reason — Brown believes the Browns have the structures in place to help the quarterback navigate them.

“If you have a drinking problem, for example, we have people in the organization who can help solve that problem,” he said. “A lot of us need a helping hand and if alcohol is the problem [with Manziel], we know it can be treated.”

Manziel’s future with the Browns is uncertain at best, but it appears the organization — if not embattled head coach Mike Pettine, who often seems hot-and-cold with the QB — wants to take a look at his potential in the remaining games this season to see if he has a future with the team.

That assumes, though, Manziel keeps his nose clean while getting another chance to prove himself yet again, especially given how poorly things went the last time he was handed the starting job.

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