Cleveland Browns rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel didn’t take too kindly to the catcalls and shouts from Redskins fans in Washington D.C. this past Monday night and he let them know it by “flipping the bird.” Now the NFL has fined the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner $12,000 for the act.
As reported in USA Today, Manziel was fined by the league for the gesture he made toward the sidelines in the third quarter during a preseason game on Monday night. Manziel, the popular first round pick who many thought was a lock to start for Cleveland played very pedestrian, going 7 of 16 for 65 yards and a touchdown, and has since lost the starting job to Brian Hoyer. And now he is $12,000 lighter in the wallet.
Johnny Manziel, who obviously has some growing up to do, spoke about the game and the incident, as noted by ESPN.
“I felt like I did a good job of holding my composure throughout the night, and you have a lapse of judgment and slip up.”
But it’s not the first time that Manziel’s hand gestures have got him in trouble. While the starting quarterback at Texas A&M, Manziel made the now-infamous finger rubbing motion that indicates money — or in his case — the payment of money, after scoring a touchdown for the Aggies early last season. The gesture earned him and his team an unsportsmanlike penalty. His coaches were appalled (publicly, at least), and word got around that Manziel was getting delusions of grandeur.
To make matters worse, as originally reported on The Inquisitr, the incident came after an off-season allegation that Manziel took money from an autograph broker, which is against NCAA regulations. The NCAA found wrong doing, and suspended him one half of one game, which caused the nation to scratch it’s head.
Manziel’s “money” gesture followed him throughout his sophomore year and onto the grand stage of the NFL Draft this past April when he flashed the motion as commissioner Roger Goddell held up his newly acquired Cleveland Browns jersey.
Johnny Manziel has developed a reputation of cockiness and of off-the-field partying that continues to dog the young quarterback. His exploits have even started to overshadow what he can do on the field and his benching this week by the Browns in favor of Brian Hoyer prove that in the NFL, the leash will be much shorter than when he ruled College Station as a Heisman Trophy winner. Only time will tell if he will learn the lesson, but if he keeps it up, Manziel will lose so much more than $12,000.
[Images courtesy of Fox Sports and AP / Frank Franklin II]