Johnny Manziel made history in 2012 when he took the college football world by storm and won the Heisman Trophy. This season, he was hoping to do even more with the Texas A&M Aggies, up to and including an SEC title and BCS National Championship, while perhaps winning another Heisman Trophy for himself. After a second loss this season, this time at the hands of the Auburn Tigers, it doesn’t look like Manziel will accomplish any of that and he can blame his defense.
On Saturday, Johnny Football did his Johnny Football thing and made phenomenal plays through the air on the ground. He tore through the Auburn defense for 454 yards passing with four touchdowns while rushing for 48 yards and another score on the ground. It was another phenomenal performance for Manziel who came into the game ranked No. 4 in the country in total offense, capped by a late touchdown drive to rally the Aggies ahead of the Tigers with five minutes to play in the game.
But it wasn’t enough. As they have for most of the season, the Aggies’ defense was unable to stand up against the offensive assault. They came into the game Saturday dead last in the SEC in total defense, allowing 474.3 yards per game, and they kept that ineptitude going this weekend. Auburn racked up 615 yards of total offense, including 379 on the ground, and marched down the field for the g0-ahead touchdown with just over a minute to play in the game.
Manziel did his best to play the hero for A&M once again but came up short. Being forced to be Superman each and every week to overcome the play of his defense has forced Manziel to press more this season. Against Auburn, he threw interceptions six and seven of the 2013 season already after throwing only nine during his Heisman run last season. It’s easy to see that Manziel has taken the next step in his game, becoming a better passer in his second year as a starter. But he’s being asked to do too much because of his defense and it is showing.
Johnny Football has been playing manically this season to get A&M to the top of the SEC. But the Aggies have now lost twice this season because of an absolutely porous defense, ending their shot at the SEC title, a BCS title and probably Manziel’s chances to repeat as the Heisman Trophy winner.