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Johnny Manziel shines at circus-like pro day workout

The only thing missing might have been an introduction from the late Ed McMahon.

There were general managers. There were head coaches. There was a former president of the United States. There was plenty of rap music, too.

It's safe to say there will never be another pro day like Johnny Manziel's ever again. And surprisingly it might have lived up to the hype.

» LeBron James, Michael Vick praise Manziel on Twitter

"He showed us he can make all the throws," NFL Network analyst Kurt Warner said. "That deep ball was impeccable. Great touch, good enough velocity and was able to set it out there."

"I think (Manziel) loves competition," NFL Media draft analyst Mike Mayock said. "He lights up like a Christmas tree with all these GMs here."

Manziel completed 61 of 64 passes Thursday at Texas A&M's indoor facility. He had one blemish with a throw that was too low, but was otherwise on target with just about every throw. One throw was caught out of bounds and the other incompletion was a drop.

Mayock compared Manziel's arm strength with the other top quarterback prospects in this year's draft -- Blake Bortles and Teddy Bridgewater -- and said Manziel's arm was at least as strong as Bortles' and looks stronger than Bridgewater's. Mayock raved about Manziel's competitiveness and said Manziel confirmed that he can make every throw mechanically.

The quarterback was likewise pleased with how he performed.

"My main thing is I'm not scared of anything. I don't play that way. Why come out here in a scripted workout and be scared of anything?" Manziel said in a post-workout interview on NFL Network. "Throw the pigskin around and let's have fun. This was a football player's dream."

Eight teams sent head coaches to the pro day -- Bill O'Brien, Chip Kelly, Gus Bradley and Mike Zimmer were among those in attendance. NFL general managers also flocked to College Station to catch a glimpse of the most anticipated pro day in recent memory.

The end result was not only a chance for Manziel to impress front offices with what he can do on the field, but also to prove to teams that he has the makeup to be the top pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.

"I'm an extremely coachable kid and I'm ready to learn. That's the biggest thing for me," Manziel said. "There were things that I wasn't asked to do at A&M, protections and so many things you have to do, so throw it at me. I want it. I need to learn it eventually. I'm tired of saying 'Man, I wish I would have known that when I was there.' Let's try and get ahead of the game.

"I just want to let these guys know that my focus is football. This is my life, this is what I love to do. I've never been more dedicated my entire life. I'm so excited. I understand the challenge."

It remains to be seen if that will be enough to persuade the Texans to make him the selection atop the draft this year. The club that decides to take a chance on the gunslinger from A&M could be getting a future Pro Bowl player based on what Mayock saw on Thursday.

"There's a leap of faith involved from a general manager or team perspective if you want to take this kid in the top 10," Mayock said. "When chaos happens, he's phenomenal. What you have to buy into, if he's a top-10 pick, is that he's going to learn. If you combine his spontaneity with an ability to win from within the pocket, then you've got something unique in today's NFL. If you get that, yeah, he's the No. 1 pick in the draft."

Will he ultimately wind up hearing his name called first by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell at Radio City Music Hall on May 8? We'll see. He certainly took a step in the right direction with his workout on Thursday, though.

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