Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones admitted that he was “that close” to taking quarterback Johnny Manziel with the 16th pick in the NFL draft in May, but, according to a new book, it might have been even closer than that.
The Cowboys’ Manziel draft card was — literally — snatched from the hand of the owner/general manager by his son, author Jim Dent writes in “Manziel Mania.” The ‘Boys instead took Zack Martin and Manziel fell to the Cleveland Browns at No. 22. “Cowboys vice president Stephen Jones had snatched the Manziel card straight out of his dad’s hand,” Dent wrote (excerpt via the Dallas Morning News).
An unnamed source who, according to Sean Lester of the News, was in the draft room, shot down the report Monday night, saying it was inaccurate.
For Dent, author of a book on Jerry Jones, the behavior seems plausible.
“I could just see Jones grabbing Manziel with the 16th choice of the first round,” Dent writes. “I wrote a book about Jerry Jones in 1995 titled ‘King of the Cowboys.’ I know the Boss Hog. I knew that Jones’ hands were shaking when the Cowboys went on the clock with Manziel still on the board. I could envision Jones scribbling the name of Johnny Manziel on the draft card. Indeed, all of these things happened.”
Last month, Jerry Jones admitted he came “that close” to taking Manziel.
“I want you to know that almost as I was handing in the card, it was that close to putting that Manziel card in. It was that close,” Jones told the NFL Network. “I looked over to my son, Stephen, our chief executive officer, and I said ‘I took the right pick..’ He was the top player by three players on our board at the time that we were sitting there looking at him.”
Jerry Jones and Johnny Manziel. It probably is too good to be true.