Johnny Manziel will be returning to the pro football ranks this summer.
The former Cleveland Browns quarterback announced Saturday he will be signing with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League. A source informed of the contract told NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport it’s a two-year deal.
The Tiger-Cats held Manziel’s exclusive rights and were considered his best option back into football after he was out of the sport for two years.
Getting back to playing ball — that’s what it comes down to,” Manziel said in a video tweeted by Barstool Sports. “It’s something that I miss doing. … Big day for me. I’m no longer unemployed, getting back to what I love to do, and I’m happy about it.”
Manziel, 25, hasn’t played professional football since his release from the Cleveland Browns after the 2015 season. The former Heisman Trophy winner, who was drafted 22nd overall by the Browns in 2014 following a standout career at Texas A&M, was cut by the Browns while under investigation for domestic assault against his former girlfriend. He later reached a deal with prosecutors for conditional dismissal of the charge.
“I sit back today and have a multitude of regrets in my life,” Manziel told NFL.com after throwing in front of NFL scouts at Texas A&M pro day in March. “I got lost in a lifestyle, got caught up in the wrong things.”
Over the last six months, Manziel has been working toward jumpstarting his career. He took part in multiple workouts in front of NFL scouts and played two games last month in The Spring League. The Tiger-Cats open up training camp Sunday under former NFL head coach June Jones. Hamilton opens the 2018 regular season against Calgary on June 16.
Whether Manziel’s #ComebackSZN will lead to CFL success — and another chance in the NFL — remains to be seen.