The NFL is investigating the roadside domestic dispute between Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel and his girlfriend.
Manziel was questioned by police last week after speeding down the shoulder of the highway, then stopping to have an argument with his girlfriend, Colleen Crowley. The police report stated that Manziel was not intoxicated, though he admitted to having two alcoholic drinks earlier in the day. Crowley was intoxicated, the police report said.
On Monday, police released dash-cam footage of the incident, in which Crowley is heard saying Manziel hit her several times and that she was fearful for her life. Crowley declined to press charges, and the two drove away together.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said it is standard procedure to investigate incidents that could be personal conduct policy violations. Browns coach Mike Pettine confirmed the inquiry at a press conference Monday, but did not provide a timetable for its completion.
Manziel, who has played in two games this season as Josh McCown’s backup, was listed as active on Sunday against the Denver Broncos. Pettine refuted the idea that Manziel’s active status was a result of the team not taking his situation seriously.
“I’m not of the mind that all discipline has to be public,” Pettine said. “If you think we’re turning a cheek to it and ignoring it, you’d be dead wrong. I get the concern and I get the outcry and I know everything with him is magnified times a thousand. He’s made a lot of strides and this is a process for him and I know it’s something that is upsetting. It’s upsetting for all of us.”
This off-season, Manziel voluntarily spent 10 weeks in a rehabilitation center.
Whether Manziel is enrolled in the NFL’s substance-abuse program is unknown, but players who are members of the program could face fines or suspensions for violating its policies.
- Erin Flynn