Former Texas A&M defensive end Damontre Moore, in a discussion with NFL AM about his preseason impact with the New York Giants, spent the last 60 seconds of a five-plus minute interview defending the character of Aggies quarterback Johnny Manziel.
The NFL rookie spent two years as Manziel's teammate, when the star quarterback redshirted in 2011, and last year when he became the first freshman ever to win the Heisman Trophy. While Manziel has taken a beating with bad publicity about six reported autograph sessions with memorabilia dealers, and alleged payments for those sessions that would jeopardize his eligibility under NCAA regulations, Moore stood by the enigmatic star.
"Once your name is in the limelight and you're in the spotlight, you're under a bigger microscope. At the same token, things are being blown out of proportion just a little bit. Johnny is a great guy, he is a great leader, he's real down to earth," Moore said.
Hall of Famer Earl Campbell told NFL AM he had the perception that Manziel lost sight of the importance of team over self after winning the Heisman Trophy, but Moore said Manziel was a good teammate prior to that.
"He was always hanging out with us. He was just like a little brother. He's a really good kid, so I think things are being blown out of proportion just a little bit. At the end of the day, I feel like he's just going to get back to playing football," Moore added. "Things will take care of themselves. He didn't do anything wrong, and he was a class guy, when I was around him."
Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.