Cleveland's quarterback has been claimed by the suburbs.
According to multiple reports, Johnny Manziel is moving from his former downtown residence at The 9 to a golf community in a west side suburb.
Positive step: Johnny Manziel moved out of downtown apt, cite of police incident, and into golf community in suburbs http://t.co/b3odks6Rfj— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) May 5, 2015
Since checking out of a rehab facility in early April, Manziel has made all the right moves. The second-year signalcaller released an apology to Browns fans on April 17 and has largely stayed out of the spotlight. The decision to move to the suburbs is Manziel's most recent attempt to set things straight.
As Fowler's source said, "Golf has been a constructive outlet for Manziel since his return."
Living downtown didn't help Manziel's development last season. Manziel was involved in a large scuffle at 2:36 a.m. on Saturday, November 22, instigated by Browns fan Chris Gonos' alleged attempt to hug the rookie. Manziel was not listed as a suspect. Manziel also overslept in his downtown apartment on the Saturday morning before the Browns' season finale against the Ravens, leading to a fine and Manziel's decision to enter rehab.
Several Browns players have marveled at Manziel's turnaround since his return from rehab, noting his work ethic and focus.
A week ago, left tackle Joe Thomas told NFL Network that Manziel's commitment has improved greatly since last season. As Thomas said:
"Last year, on a Saturday, you might see a picture of him on Instagram floating on a swan in a swimming pool, drinking champagne. This year, on a Saturday, if you came in the building, you'd see him studying his playbook and watching film with his coach. It's pretty apparent he's realized how important football is to him. He's realized you can't get away with some of the things he did in college because it's a big boy's game now."
On Tuesday, linebacker Karlos Dansby echoed the sentiment in an interview with Jim Rome. Dansby said that Manziel has matured significantly:
"He's focused. He's in here working, grinding every day. And we're right along with him, like I said ‘we have his back,' we never did turn our back on him. He just had to go through that learning curve, and he understands now what it takes, and I think he's putting forth the effort. He's grown up right before our eyes."
Fellow defensive leader Joe Haden also recently said that Manziel can "1,000 percent" be the team's starter of the future.
Despite the early progress, Manziel still has a long way to go.
During a Monday interview with 92.3 The Fan, head coach Mike Pettine said "it's fair to say" that veteran quarterback Josh McCown is the favorite to win the starting job. Pettine said of McCown:
"Josh has proven under the right circumstances that he can be successful. It was pretty clear to us when we looked into the results what happened for him a year ago, that a lot of those circumstances were out of his control that made the year as difficult as it was."
That doesn't mean that the Browns are giving up on Manziel. Pettine and the Browns still hold out hope that Manziel will develop into a franchise quarterback. As Pettine stated:
"We invested a first round pick in a quarterback last year and a lot of people just expect us to bail on Johnny after just 1 season because of what’s happened. I get it. It’s a world of instant gratification and that motivates a lot of decisions but we can’t let that dictate our roster."
From the statements of his teammates and coaches, Manziel is a new man. Now he needs to find himself on the field.