Manziel to make first CFL start

Johnny Manziel (2) will make his first professional start since he was with the Cleveland Browns in 2015.Photo: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports (File photo)

Manziel will face a familiar foe when he starts the Montreal Alouettes' home game against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats Friday

Quarterback Johnny Manziel will face a familiar foe when he starts the Montreal Alouettes' home game against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Friday.

Alouettes coach Mike Sherman announced on Tuesday that Manziel will get the nod versus the Tiger-Cats, with whom he served as a backup to Jeremiah Masoli for the first five games of the Canadian Football League season.

Manziel, a former Cleveland Browns quarterback and 2012 Heisman Trophy winner, will make his first regular-season start since Week 16 of the 2015 NFL season.

The Alouettes fell to 1-5 following a 44-23 loss to Edmonton last week. Vernon Adams completed 15 of 28 passes for 217 yards and an interception to go along with a team-high 72 rushing yards and a touchdown versus the Eskimos.

Montreal acquired Manziel and offensive linemen Tony Washington and Landon Rice from Hamilton last Tuesday in exchange for wide receiver Chris Williams, defensive lineman Jamaal Westerman and 2021-22 first-round draft picks.

The trade reunited Manziel with Sherman, who recruited him to Texas A&M in 2011. He redshirted in 2011 and won the Heisman the following season under then first-year coach Kevin Sumlin.

Manziel's only appearances for Hamilton were in two preseason games. In those games, he completed 21 of 31 passes with one touchdown while rushing six times for 19 yards.

The 25-year-old Manziel signed a two-year deal with Hamilton in May, two years after getting released by the Browns following two turbulent seasons. Before joining the CFL, he actively pursued another NFL contract.

The former first-round pick has dealt with numerous off-field problems. He had domestic assault charges against him dismissed in 2016 after he agreed to anger management courses and participated in the NFL's substance abuse program.

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