Who's going No.1? Manziel or Clowney?

Published: Feb 20, 2014 12:52pm EST
By Steven Baer, Sports Writer for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Feb 20, 2014 @ 12:52pm EST


One player was the first Freshman ever to win the Heisman, the other is a dominant defensive presence that has been on everyone's radar since his huge hit in the Outback bowl.

Johnny Manziel and Jadeveon Clowney are two of the biggest names in this years NFL draft and either one would be a great fit to help the Houston Texans rebound from their pitiful 2-14 season.

For the past seven seasons the Texans have had Matt Schaub as their quarterback.  Schaub is a two time pro-bowler that has thrown for over 4,000 yards three times in his career for the Texans.  Last year Schaub started to catch heat from the media and fans for throwing a lot of interceptions.  Schaub set an NFL record by throwing a pick-six in four consecutive games and ended up being benched.  With Schaub being 32 years old now and coming off his worst season the Texans would be crazy not too think about other quarterback options.

Johnny Manziel is a Texas born guy and can quickly raise the optimism level for the Texans franchise.  Manziel is a dynamic athlete that has played and won on some of college footballs biggest stages.  NFL teams have questions whether his style of play can transfer into the league.  Manziel credits Russell Wilson's success with the Seattle Seahawks as evidence that shorter quarterbacks can play well in the NFL, saying Wilson kicked the door open for guys like him.

Manziel, is making a case that he can also be a short quarterback who can extend plays outside the pocket and throw the ball down field.  Manziel raised his passing numbers from his 2012 Heisman trophy winning season in 2013.  He had 408 more passing yards, threw 11 more touchdowns, and raised his completion percentage.  NFL scouts have concern over Manziel doing a better job protecting his body and sliding.  Maybe Manziel feels the same way too, he had 651 less rushing yards last season.

The Texans defense struggled in 2013 ranking 25th in points per game and ranking dead last in turnovers.  One step to fixing those problems would be taking a defense end that has been compared to DeMarcus Ware, Julius Peppers and Dwight Freeney.  Clowney playing on the other side or all-pro defensive end JJ Watt has the potential to be very deadly.  Watt gets a lot of attention from offenses and if he gets double teamed Clowney could have plenty of opportunities to disrupt the backfield.  Romeo Crennel was hired to take over this defense that will run a 3-4 defense similar to that of ex-defensive coordinator Wade Phillips.  Scouts love Clowney's athleticism and believe he could also play outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense.  That would open up more creativity to rush the quarterback.

Clowney also has plenty of confidence in his athleticism saying he wants to run a 4.4 forty at the combine and believing he is one of the best players in the draft this year.

"I should be the No.1 pick in the 2014 NFL draft," said Clowney.

He has a good case to back this up, in 2012 he had 13 sacks and 23.5 tackles for loss and finished sixth in the 2012 Heisman trophy voting. 

Just like any player about to be drafted into the NFL, teams are worried about both Manziel's and Clowney's character and off the field issues.  Steve Spurrier, Clowney's head coach at South Carolina, called Clowney's work ethic "ok" in a press conference this week.  Clowney had a great 2012 season but his 2013 season was anything but that only having three sacks and not being named an All-American like he was the year before.

Manziel has had a history of doing whatever he wants and getting into trouble.  In the summer of 2012 he was arrested for fighting and having a fake drivers license.  He was asked to leave the Manning Passing Academy for allegedly oversleeping.  Back in August the NCAA was investigating whether Manziel took money for signing autographs but found no evidence in the case.

When drafting a player teams most take everything into account but when it comes down to the No.1 pick all these details become more important.


Comments (3)

  • Lance Rinker   Feb 20, 2014 @ 05:47PM
    Their best bet could be taking the top Tackle in the draft. If not then trading down could be a smart move. -

  • Michael Owen   Feb 20, 2014 @ 05:28PM
    neither one of them will be. Especially Clowney. McNair said that he felt they made a bad decision in taking a defensive player when they took Mario Williams #1 overall a few years back. Said he won't make that mistake again. Johnny Football on the other hand might help with their locals, but at best he's only the 3rd best QB available -

  • Lance Rinker   Feb 20, 2014 @ 04:16PM
    If the Texans don't think Clowney is their guy then they should trade down to around the 10th or 12th pick in the draft and nab a QB there, then another solid player after that. -

Steven Baer
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