Friday, May 16, 2014
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Cleveland Browns first round draft pick Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M) speaks during a press conference at the Cleveland Browns Headquarters. (USA TODAY Sports: Joe Maiorana)
Cleveland Browns quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains said in a radio interview that Johnny Manziel sent him a text message on the first night of last week’s draft to “hurry up and draft me.”
The Browns selected the former Texas A&M quarterback after he slipped to No. 22 overall on May 8.
Loggains told ESPN Arkansas 96.3 that an anxious Manziel wrote: “I wish you guys would come get me. Hurry up and draft me because I want to wreck this league together.”
Loggains said, “When I got that text, I forwarded it to the owner (Jimmy Haslam) and to the head coach (Mike Pettine). I’m like, ‘This guy wants to be here. He wants to be part of it.’ As soon as that happened, Mr. Haslam said, ‘Pull the trigger. We’re trading up to go get this guy.’ “
The Browns then traded up from No. 26 to No. 22 with the Philadelphia Eagles to land the former Heisman Trophy winner.
Loggains said the Browns had tried to move up to No. 11 with the Tennessee Titans and No. 16 with the Dallas Cowboys.
“Mr. Haslam and Coach Pettine had called me down to the draft room a couple of times throughout the night, and we had almost made trades with Tennessee and Dallas and backed out,” Loggains said. “… We were sitting there, and Coach Pettine keeps texting me, and we’re going back and forth and we’re going, ‘Hey, does Dallas take him here? No they won’t. Does St. Louis take him at 13?’ We knew we had to get in front of the Chiefs (at No. 23) because we knew they would draft him.”
Loggains added that Manziel was the top quarterback on the Browns’ draft board.
“It was Manziel and then everybody else,” he said.