“I Was So Depressed”: Fallen NFL Icon Discloses How LeBron James Gave Him a Fighting Chance

Published 02/21/2024, 10:32 PM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

NBA legend LeBron James has been a source of inspiration for many people around the world. Having established a lucrative NBA career that has spanned over 21 years, the 39-year-old continues to serve as a role model for not only NBA fans but also for aspiring players of a different sport as well.

Sometimes, however, even having the Los Angeles Lakers icon by your side is not enough to lift yourself up from a slump. A recent revelation by a former NFL icon helps us understand the same.

Johnny Manziel regrets brushing away LeBron James’ help


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Recently, Johnny Manziel sat down for an interview with former three-time Superbowl Champion Shannon Sharpe. During the same, he talked about the supposed “clickbait headlines” that started to pop up after the rookie player joined the Cleveland Browns. Manziel believed then that the “headlines”, which stated that the player would be bigger than LeBron James, were something that was never going to be a reality.


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Despite being given the opportunity to shine with the Browns, Manziel now admits that the way he carried himself during his brief tenure with the team was a “pure and blatant disrespect” to the people who believed in him. He felt that the person he let down the most during this period was the Lakers legend himself.

“LeBron would text me every week to come over to the house and watch a game, or play poker with the boys and just tried to be there,” said Manziel. “I was so depressed for the first time in my life that even my biggest role model and inspiration in my life couldn’t get me out of bed to come and hang out with them”.

Despite being in a different place mentally back then, the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner believes that his condition should not have been an excuse for brushing away the support he was getting from LeBron James and countless others.

Manziel’s brief stint with the Browns


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Johnny Manziel was selected by the Cleveland Browns back in 2014 as part of their first-round pick during the draft. Despite all the reported anticipation about his on-field performance, Manziel ended up appearing in only 14 games during his first two seasons. His disappointing performance at the beginning of his NFL career resulted in the player slipping down NFL Draft Boards and being out of the league by 2016.

The former Football Quarterback has reportedly been quite open in the past about battling his bipolar disorder and dealing with suicidal thoughts. His latest interview is just another revelation into how the now 31-year-old struggled to confront his issues, even when support was being provided to him.

via Getty

What are your thoughts on Manziel’s disclosure? Let us know in the comments down below.


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Written by:

Ashmit Kumar


One take at a time

Ashmit is an NBA Content Analyst at EssentiallySports. Having started as a writer, he specializes in writing captivating stories that include the elements of in-depth coverage of teams, players and more. Due to his knowledge of the technicalities of the sport, Ashmit writes perspective pieces that provide well-researched analysis.
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