Manziel dropped by LeBron’s marketing firm
When the marketing firm that handles the LeBron James account (LRMR Agency) dropped Johnny Manziel as a client, it was interpreted as another sign that the Browns’ quarterback has played his last game for Cleveland. Maverick Carter, James’s long-time business manager, said Manziel “needs to focus on personal growth” and not on his marketing potential. Manziel has had a series of misadventures during his two years in Cleveland. His second Las Vegas episode occurred when he was supposed to appear for a concussion examination in Cleveland, which brought indefinite suspension by the team. James had this to say: “It’s a distraction not just for himself but for everyone that’s around him, including family, people that represent him. . . He’ll figure it out at some point, we all hope.”
Esiason cites ‘laziness’ on DeSean Jackson’s non-TD
DeSean Jackson was on his way to a touchdown that could have given Washington a 9-0 lead in the second quarter of a wild-card playoff against Green Bay. But instead of entering the end zone and facing collision with safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, the receiver tip-toed out of bounds. Unfortunately, he stepped out before the ball crossed into the end zone, so it was spotted on the half-yard line. The Redskins could not punch it in and settled for a field goal and a 5-0 lead. They went on to lose 35-18. NFL Network analyst Boomer Esiason, a former Pro Bowl quarterback, accused Jackson of “laziness” for not securing the touchdown. It was not the first time the receiver’s nonchalance has cost his team a TD. As a Philadelphia Eagles rookie in 2008 he was running for the end zone and spiked the ball just before crossing the goal line. Jackson refused to speak with media after the Packers’ game.
Rex Ryan hires his brother to be Bills defensive coordinator
Rex Ryan was disappointed when his Buffalo Bills ranked 19th in defense in the NFL, and his players publicly complained of poor communication with coaches on the sidelines. It was no surprise when Ryan, Buffalo’s head coach, fired his defensive coordinator, Dennis Thurman. But it was a bit of a surprise when Ryan then hired his brother, Rob Ryan, who did not distinguish himself this season. He recently was fired as DC of the New Orleans Saints, who ranked next to last in yards allowed in the NFL. But Rex and Rob have directed highly-ranked NFL defenses in the past, and it will be interesting to see how they work together and how they get along on the sidelines. Whatever happens, the Ryan twins will be must-watch television drama.
Unbeaten SMU’s Larry Brown missing with vertigo
It seems to be much under the national radar that the SMU Mustangs are 15-0 and ranked 10th by AP. But they did draw attention when their 75-year-old head coach, Hall of Famer Larry Brown, was missing from the bench in the second half of a game in Dallas. He was suffering from vertigo. After the 15-point win over UCF, Brown said, “I’ll be fine.” He said he was weary from dehydration and lack of sleep. Brown said he was concerned about junior guard Keith Frazier, who has missed three consecutive games with a “personal issue.”