Cleveland Browns quarterback and former college football folk hero Johnny Manziel has made a name for himself on and off the football field. But what initially appeared to be a selfish string of partying and poor decisions may actually be a symptom of a deeper issue, as evidenced by Manziel’s recent decision to check himself into rehab.
Potential reasons for rehabilitation
Although the exact reason for Manziel’s admission to rehab remains unknown, it is widely speculated that it is in connection to the numerous off-the-field incidents that have become a theme of the “Johnny Football” story over the past couple years. The party-boy antics he displayed during his time at Texas A&M led many to question whether he was mature enough to handle life at the next level. Unfortunately, his behavior as a rookie in the NFL only validated those concerns.
Before the season even began, the Browns reportedly asked Manziel to curb his partying in preparation for the approaching season, only to see pictures surface a few weeks later of Manziel rolling up a dollar bill in the bathroom of a bar. Fast-forward to early January 2015 and Manziel had to be tracked down by Browns security after missing a mandatory team function the morning before their final home game. Security found him at his home, visibly drunk from the night before.
Are Manziel’s indiscretions more than momentary lapses in judgment?
Some have simply chalked up Manziel’s track record to a lack of discipline and poor decision-making. But there are others who have maintained that his inability to avoid alcohol-related incidents is a sign of a much deeper dependence on the substance. There is a deep inner-struggle that can come from being catapulted into a high-profile, high-pressure situation that few can actually understand. Johnny went from the sidelines to superstardom in the blink of an eye. Alcohol and other substances can be viewed as a coping mechanism in these kinds of scenarios.
Immense external pressure can often contribute to alcoholism. That’s something Johnny’s parents have feared for some time. His father Paul admitted as much to ESPN The Magazine in July 2013, saying he thinks Johnny drinks to deal with the stress and anger that so noticeably eat at him. Around that same time, his parents and Texas A&M mandated that Johnny visit an alcohol counselor, but he stopped after just a few weeks and apparently failed to truly take anything away from it.
Manziel met with support after willingly seeking treatment
Finally, after his late-January decision to enter treatment, it appears Manziel has reached that point. He even turned down a six-figure offer to host a Super Bowl party at a Las Vegas casino in order to stick to his commitment of bettering himself. Since taking this important step toward making a sincere effort to clean himself up, he has been met with encouragement and support from a Browns organization that has felt the effects of his actions and the media members who have watched it all unfold.
“We respect Johnny’s initiative in this decision and will fully support him throughout this process,” said Browns General Manager Ray Farmer. “Our players’ health and well-being will always be of the utmost importance to the Cleveland Browns. We continually strive to create a supportive environment and provide the appropriate resources, with our foremost focus being on the individual and not just the football player.”
In addition to their concern and support, several of Manziel’s teammates have expressed how surprised they were by the news, reinforcing the notion that drug and alcohol abuse are not always obvious to friends and family of the user. Sometimes what may appear as simple lapses in judgment are really subtle signs of suffering from something much more serious. If unaddressed, alcoholism and substance abuse can have debilitating effects. So if someone you love is showing even the slightest signs, don’t wait to get them the help they deserve. Call The Watershed today at 1-800-861-1768.Tags: Drug Use in Sports, NFL, Sports Addicts