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Johnny Manziel chalks up disastrous CFL debut to test from ‘football gods’

Johnny Manziel’s debut in the Canadian Football League last week was beyond inauspicious. In fact, it was a downright disaster.

The 25-year-0ld quarterback, being quite familiar with pitfalls and setbacks in a bid to resurrect his professional football career, simply chalked up the debacle to a test from the “football gods.”

Manziel has been relatively pragmatic about his mishap-prone outing last Friday with the Montreal Alouettes, a horrific performance that included four first-half interceptions. That outlook continued while Manziel discussed it anew on Barstool Sports podcast “Comeback SZN.”

“[It] tests your drive. It tests your will,” Manziel said on the podcast, as transcribed by the New York Post. “It makes you think if you’re doing the right thing for a split second … everybody was really worried, because it couldn’t have gone any worse than it did. I sat there and chalked it up to the football gods testing me a little bit personally to see how much I really want this and how much I want to get in and work to make it happen.

“It’s humbling to come back after a few years off and that’s your first game and that’s the result you get. … But sometimes on the field, it’s just not your day. And that’s what I feel it truly was. That’s no excuse for me to sit there and let it just ruin anything that I’ve been doing for the last two years to get back to this point. It’s not your day. You got punched in the mouth, you have to keep moving forward.”

Manziel referred to the Alouette’s 50-11 loss to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats — his former team before a trade — as a “humbling experience” in the immediate aftermath of the calamity. As noted, though, Manziel has been through too much to let one game — especially one in which a lot of rust needed to be shaken off — compel him to just give up after fighting so hard for this opportunity.