Johnny Manziel is headed back to the United States to play football.
The former first-round pick of the Cleveland Browns has signed an agreement to play in the Alliance of American Football, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Saturday. Because San Antonio, the team he would have been allocated to, waived his rights, according to Schefter, he will go through the league’s waiver system.
Memphis, with a 1-5 record, will hold the first waiver claim once Manziel goes through the system. The Express are on their third quarterback this season, having started with Christian Hackenberg and then gone to Zach Mettenberger.
Brandon Silvers played the majority of Saturday’s 22-9 loss to Salt Lake after Mettenberger suffered an ankle injury early in the game. Silvers completed 23 of 37 passes for 242 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions. Memphis has struggled on offense throughout the season.
Two weeks ago, league co-founder Bill Polian said the AAF had put out “feelers” to Manziel and was in the midst of doing its research on him after he was released from the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes.
Manziel immediately becomes one of the biggest name draws in the league as one of the few former NFL first-round picks tied to the league, most notably among them Birmingham running back Trent Richardson.
Other than Orlando, which has Garrett Gilbert at quarterback, most of the league’s teams have had some issues at the position.
Standard AAF contracts are for three years and $250,000. However, players can earn more in incentives.