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XFL commissioner: Johnny Manziel ‘certainly’ could be ‘in the mix’ next year

Jesse Reed

Vince McMahon has made it crystal clear in the recent past that his relaunched XFL will have strict guidelines against hiring players with a criminal past. Thus, most assumed Johnny Manziel wouldn’t have a shot at playing in the league.

However, based on comments made by XFL commissioner Oliver Luck, the league might be reversing course as it concerns Manziel, who has a history of criminal conduct.

“If he is able to meet our standards and if our coaches think he’s one of the top quarterbacks out there that can help us… Certainly we have no reason not to believe he couldn’t be in the mix,” Luck said on the “PFT PM” podcast. “But, again it’s really up to our coaches in terms of the quarterbacks they wanna take a look at.”

The issue here is that Manziel was indicted by a grand jury on misdemeanor assault charges stemming from an incident with his ex-girlfriend back in 2016. He would later cut a plea deal that involved counseling for anger management to avoid jail time.

Obviously, there is some allure to adding a player like Manziel to a league that will need some clout to stay afloat. In his extremely brief time with the AAF, Manziel instantly became one of the league’s most popular players.

Needless to say, it will be interesting to see if McMahon and the XFL makes an exception for Manziel, assuming he doesn’t land an NFL gig before the new league opens in February of 2020.