Report: San Francisco 49ers Coach Jim Harbaugh High On Johnny Manziel

Dec 31, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Texas A&M Aggies quarterback Johnny Manziel (2) runs a touchdown past the defense of Duke Blue Devils safety Jeremy Cash (16) in the 2013 Chick-fil-A Bowl at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports

Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel is one of the most polarizing players available in the 2014 NFL Draft, but you can add San Francisco 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh as to his corner.

CBSSports.com asked Harbaugh at the Draft Combine in Indianapolis whether he believes Manziel will succeed at the pro level.

“Yes I think he will,” Harbaugh said. “He’s very competitive, he’s a winner. He’ll translate very well to the NFL.”

Before dismissing Harbaugh’s comments as just another pre-draft smokescreen, there are two things to remember. The 49ers already have their quarterback in Colin Kaepernick and there is absolutely no way that Manziel will still be on the board when San Francisco selects 30th in the first round.

In 2012, Manziel became the first freshman to ever win the Heisman Trophy, throwing for 3,706 yards and 26 touchdowns while rushing for another 1,410 yards and 21 scores while leading Texas A&M to an 11-2 record that included an upset win at eventual BCS national champion Alabama and a thrashing of Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl.

Last season, Manziel threw for 4,114 yards and 37 touchdowns while running for 759 yards and nine TDs. The Aggies went 9-4 and pulled off a comeback from a 38-17 halftime deficit to beat Duke in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl, 52-48. Manziel was 30-for-38 for 382 yards and four touchdowns passing and ran for 73 yards on 11 carries for another score.

Scouts Inc. has Manziel ranked 22nd among its top 32 prospects. ESPN’s Todd McShay has the former Heisman Winner at No. 20, while ESPN.com draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. ranks Manziel 11th.

Topics: Jim Harbaugh, Johnny Manziel, San Francisco 49ers

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