Johnny Manziel responded to trash talk on his preseason CFL debut by telling his opponents, “I’m not going to be treated like s***.”
Quarterback Manziel appeared for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats for the first time on Friday, impressing as he made plays with his legs, found open receivers on scrambles and showed flashes of why his new coach, June Jones, suggested last year that he could become the best player in CFL history.
But the 25-year-old, whose NFL career was derailed by off-field issues, also had to contend with jibes from Toronto Argonauts defenders in a 36-18 defeat, prompting a strong response.
“I’m not here to be pushed over,” Manziel said after standing up for himself on the field.
“You can come at me because my name’s in the papers, my name’s on TV. You can come at me. I’m not backing down.
“I’m here for a reason. I’m here to play ball. I’m not going to be treated like s***.”
— CFL (@CFL) June 2, 2018
And Jones saw cause for optimism in his new star man’s performance.
“He did some good things,” Jones said. “He’s got a game presence. He just hasn’t been here quite as long. He’s not flustered, he’s not rattled.”
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