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Johnny Manziel must prove arm strength to NFL brass


Somewhat lost in questions about whether Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel has the maturity or the size to succeed in the NFL is the most obvious one of all: Does he have the arm?

Passing for 3,700 yards as a freshman in the Southeastern Conference is impressive, but the waiver wire is littered with players who rang up gaudy statistics in college without ever cashing a gaudy paycheck in the NFL. Particularly at the quarterback position, where a lacking skill set can't be disguised or covered for, Manziel will ultimately have to prove he can frustrate pro cornerbacks as much as he can frustrate college pass rushers.

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Johnny Manziel beach workout

Johnny Manziel works out with QB guru George Whitfield in San Diego.

Using another short quarterback as an example, Sports Illustrated's Peter King set the bar for what Manziel needs to show arm-wise in an interview on the Dan Patrick Show. King said the throw Seattle Seahawks rookie Russell Wilson made to beat the New England Patriots last season is just the sort of throw Manziel will have to make if he wants to play on Sundays.

This week on the NFL Draft 365 podcast, Bucky Brooks and Matt Smith delved into all other things Manziel, from his persona to his ability to handle celebrity-like scrutiny.

King, too, discussed Manziel's off-the-field behavior, saying the quarterback will have to answer to NFL teams for the "monumental" red flags that surround him.

All those questions will have to be answered.

But the signature pass of Manziel's entire season last year was an off-balance floater that NFL safeties would love to try to defend. With 32 teams in the league and around three quarterbacks on each, Manziel doesn't have to be one of the league's best 100 human beings to make a living in the NFL. But he will need to have one of its best 100 throwing arms.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread

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