Johnny Football is coming to town. According to ESPN, Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel will visit the Raiders facility on Sunday night and again on Monday.
This is one of several visits scheduled before the draft, designed to get to know college prospects. Teams generally test a player’s mental prowess during these meetings, especially quarterbacks. By rule, teams can’t work players out during these visits. They can only get medical evaluations and conduct interviews.
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The Raiders select No. 5 overall and have long talked about selecting a young quarterback in the draft. The team also traded a sixth-round pick for veteran quarterback Matt Schaub, who is expected to start in 2014.
The Raiders are permitted 30 pre-draft visits with college players. A visit can suggest interest in a player, though it doesn’t mean a team is set on drafting that player. These are fact finding missions.
The Raiders met with Manziel at the NFL scouting combine. Raiders head coach Dennis Allen, also a Texas A&M alum, offensive coordinator Greg Olson and quarterbacks coach John DiFilipo attended Manziel’s pro day on March 27.
Allen was impressed by Manziel’s pro day, as were many other people.
“The biggest thing you have to look at with Johnny, it’s really not as much what you see on the field, but all the other things surrounding him – the media attention, the celebrity of Johnny Manziel,” Allen told the Houston Chronicle. “Those are all things, as he continues to mature, that he’ll be able to handle. And if he’s able to handle those things and keep them under control, he’s going to have a successful career.”