Johnny Manziel is returning to the pro football ranks this summer.
The former Cleveland Browns quarterback signed a two-year contract with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League on Saturday, the team announced. The Tiger-Cats held Manziel's exclusive rights and were considered his best option back into football after he was out of the sport for two years.
"We're excited to add Johnny Manziel to our roster, particularly getting it done now so that Johnny can join his new teammates and the coaching staff for a full training camp," Tiger-Cats coach June Jones said. "We feel like we've got an excellent group of quarterbacks, and the addition of Johnny only improves our football team in our pursuit of the ultimate goal, which is to win a Grey Cup Championship."
"Getting back to playing ball -- that's what it comes down to," Manziel said in a video tweeted by Barstool Sports. "It's something that I miss doing. ... Big day for me. I'm no longer unemployed, getting back to what I love to do, and I'm happy about it."
Manziel, 25, hasn't played professional football since his release from the Cleveland Browns after the 2015 season. The former Heisman Trophy winner, who was drafted 22nd overall by the Browns in 2014 following a standout career at Texas A&M, was 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.
Over the last six months, Manziel has been working toward jumpstarting his career. He took part in multiple workouts in front of NFL scouts and played two games last month in The Spring League. The Tiger-Cats open up training camp Sunday. They start the regular season June 16 against Calgary.
"I sit back today and have a multitude of regrets in my life," Manziel told NFL.com after throwing in front of NFL scouts at Texas A&M pro day in March. "I got lost in a lifestyle, got caught up in the wrong things."
Whether Manziel's #ComebackSZN will lead to CFL success -- and another chance in the NFL -- remains to be seen.