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NFL draft guru: Johnny Manziel 'up there with' Matt Ryan in terms of football smarts

Johnny Manziel compared to Matt Ryan by NFL draft guru Johnny Manziel will hold a personal pro day at Texas A&M on March 27. (Erich Schlegel for SI)

Over the course of the next month, we will hear plenty about 2014 NFL draft prospect Johnny Manziel. The former Texas A&M star quarterback is one of the most polarizing prospects in this year's class because of his unorthodox playing style and less-than-ideal height, but his confidence and ability to make a play when everything breaks down has intrigued multiple teams.

While many believe Manziel could flop at the next level, well-respected NFL.com analyst and former VP of player personnel for the Dallas Cowboys Gil Brandt is a strong supporter of Manziel and believes he has as high of a football IQ as anyone in the 2014 draft class.

If Manziel can demonstrate that he has an understanding of the game that sets him apart from the rest of the class, the possibility that he will be the No. 1 overall pick of the Houston Texans will no doubt improve.

MORE COVERAGE: 2014 NFL Mock Draft: Bortles goes No. 12014 NFL free agency grades

We will continue to hear reports leading up to the draft that both support and criticize Manziel, but it will be up to the teams to sort through what they find out on their own and determine whether or not they trust Manziel enough to be the face of their franchise.
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