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Johnny Manziel compared to Tim Tebow by Warren Moon

Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Warren Moon isn't sure Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel is worth a first-round pick and said his NFL career could end up like that of Tim Tebow's.

Manziel "as a college quarterback" was one of the greatest to ever play, "but so was Tim Tebow. He had a tough time making that transition because he was that same style of quarterback," Moon said Wednesday on Houston radio station KILT-AM.

Moon voiced doubts about how well Manziel can transition to the NFL.

"He likes to run around and make plays, and he was able to do that in college," Moon said. "I just don't know how well that's going to transition into the National Football League."

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Moon called Manziel "a small guy that's not very fast in an NFL that's big, strong and fast," and that "I need to see a little bit more of him as a pocket passer because that's where quarterbacks in the National Football League are going to make their money."

Moon, who is sixth on the NFL's career passing-yardage list, definitely was a pocket passer in college at Washington, in the CFL and in the NFL, putting up big numbers with Houston, Minnesota and Seattle. But his assertion that only pocket passers can make money in the NFL is being challenged of late.

Colin Kaepernick, Cam Newton and Russell Wilson, to name three of the best young quarterbacks in the league, have shown an ability to make plays in the pocket (So has Manziel). But they also have shown an ability -- and maybe even an affinity -- to make plays with their legs, and certainly have not suffered because of it (The same goes for Manziel). Nor have their teams suffered (And neither did A&M). Moon surely realizes that turning any of those three into purely pocket passers would be a huge mistake.

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As for comparing Manziel to Tebow, both played in the SEC, both played in versions of the spread offense and both won the Heisman. But the 240-pound Tebow was a battering ram as a runner, nothing like the 207-pound Manziel, who is elusive and quick. Tebow played in a run-heavy version of the spread at Florida, much different than the more pass-friendly spread Manziel starred in at Texas A&M. And Manziel's form as a passer is vastly different -- and much better -- than Tebow's.

It's fair to wonder if Manziel will flame out like Tebow (heck, it's fair to wonder about that with every potential draftee), and Moon's opinion that Manziel could fail in the NFL is shared by more than a few people. But to say Manziel might fail because his "style" is similar to Tebow's is ludicrous. Moon needs to watch more tape of the two before he compares Manziel to Tebow again.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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