Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones previously admitted he was tempted to draft Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel with the 16th pick in May's draft, saying he was "that close" to pulling the trigger on the pick. A new book by author Jim Dent corroborates that story and adds that Stephen Jones, the Cowboys' COO, executive vice president, director of player personnel, and Jerry Jones' son, had to convince Jerry not to pick Manziel.
Dent's book claims that Stephen Jones "snatched" a draft card with Manziel's name out of his father's hand. However, Clarence Hill, the longtime Cowboys beat writer for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, reports that specific event did not happen, and that there are no draft cards in team war rooms.
Manziel was eventually drafted by the Cleveland Browns with the No. 22 pick, and is competing with veteran Brian Hoyer for the team's starting QB job.
More: Romo on Romo
The full scene from Dent's book, Manziel Mania:
“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.
“As it turned out, Cowboys vice president Stephen Jones had snatched the Manziel card straight out of his dad’s hand. Otherwise, Jerry would have drafted him and JFF would have sat for at least three years behind Tony Romo.”
The Cowboys instead selected Notre Dame offensive lineman Zack Martin with the pick.
Johnny Football must shine to take Hoyer's job
On Friday's SI Now, Sports Illustrated senior writer Don Banks discusses the reasons why Cleveland head coach Mike Pettine is starting Brian Hoyer over Johnny Manziel in the teams second preseason game.
- Alex Hampl