Johnny Manziel says he's sober, hopes to play football


Johnny Manziel hasn't played a football game since 2015. The former Cleveland Browns quarterback is hoping to change that fact.

Speaking with Good Morning America, for a piece that aired Monday, Manziel detailed his downward spiral, alcohol use, depression, and hopes for a return to football.

"I was self-medicating with alcohol. That's what I thought would make me happy and get out of that depression," Manziel said. "When I would wake up the next day after a night like that, going on a trip like that, and you wake up the next day and that is all gone, that liquid courage, or that liquid ... sense of euphoria that is over you, is all gone.

"You are left staring at the ceiling by yourself, and in that depression and back in that hole, that dark hole of sitting in a room by yourself, super depressed, thinking about all the mistakes you made in your life," he added. "What did that get me? Where did that get me except out of the NFL? Where did that get me? Disgraced?"

Manziel also revealed he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder about a year ago. He also said he has stopped drinking.

"I am taking medication for bipolar, and I am working to try to make sure I don't fall back into any type of depression, because I know where that leads me and I know how slippery a slope that is for me," he said.

"At the end of the day, I can't help that my wires are a little bit differently crossed than yours," he said. "I can't help my mental makeup or the way that I was created."

As for football, Manziel received an offer to play in the CFL, with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, but sides have yet to agree on a contract.

The former Heisman Trophy winner hasn't sniffed an NFL team since being cut by the Browns while under investigation for domestic assault against his former girlfriend. He later reached a deal with prosecutors for conditional dismissal of the charge.

Manziel's background and poor play when given a chance could preclude him from ever making a full comeback, but the former first-round pick isn't giving up hope.

"I am coming back from a huge downfall," Manziel told GMA. "I don't know what kind of comeback it will be, but I know I want to get back on a football field, to what brought me so much joy in my life."