New Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan's first order of business when it comes to prospect evaluations will be to assess the quarterbacks, and though he hasn't yet turned on the film, Johnny Manziel already has made an impression.
"I (like) what I've seen of (Manziel) on (ESPN's) 'SportsCenter,'" Shanahan told the Bull and Fox radio program. "I haven't sat and studied him, but who wouldn't like him? He's fun to watch, he makes plays, and he's as much of a playmaker as I've seen on 'SportsCenter' as anybody."
Manziel has been linked to the Browns as a prospect the club is excited about even before Shanahan, or new head coach Mike Pettine, were hired. Cleveland holds the No. 4 overall pick, which may not be high enough to get the former Texas A&M star with the bold style both on and off the field. Shanahan, of course, wasn't tipping the Browns' draft hand any more than multiple reports already have, but acknowledged the importance of evaluating the available quarterbacks.
"I'm going to get started here pretty fast here and actually maybe even this afternoon starting to watch these college guys. We've been sitting here trying to put our staff together for the three days I've been here ... trying to mix in watching our own players and I've got to get the college players in quickly because we're going down to (Indianapolis) in a couple of weeks," Shanahan said. "But I've got to get looking at the quarterbacks first and foremost."
"I'll (start) at the top of the draft and I know (Manziel's) up there," Shanahan said. "Our personnel department brings me a list and I've enjoyed what I've seen on 'SportsCenter,' so I can't wait to see the coaches' copy."
Shanahan also indicated he has little doubt that Manziel's skills as a runner could translate well to the NFL.
"When you have that much success in college, you're not going against some bad players. When you're that big of a playmaker, you're going to be able to make some plays in the NFL too," he said.
Cleveland ownership reportedly was willing to trade up to acquire Manziel, in necessary, prior to hiring a coaching staff.