HomeSportsJohnny Manziel's 'Very Noble' to Expose Mental Health Issues in Documentary

Johnny Manziel’s ‘Very Noble’ to Expose Mental Health Issues in Documentary

Content Warning: This article mentions suicide. If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day at 988.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans, probably many others this week, . Not only did he want to check in with his friend and former teammate, but Evans actually appeared in the documentary.

But when Manziel started talking about his mental health issues, including trying to take his own life, Evans was stunned.

“I knew he was in a very dark place, I didn’t know about that,” Evans said on Wednesday. “I care about him, but you know, I didn’t know about his suicide attempt. That was news.”

Manziel and Evans played together for two seasons at Texas A&M from 2012-2013. They then both entered the NFL Draft in 2014. Manziel, who won the Heisman Trophy in 2012, went No. 22 overall to the Cleveland Browns. Evans went No. 7 overall to the Buccaneers.

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Mike Evans, who starred with Johnny Manziel at Texas A&M, said he learned about Manziel’s mental health struggles in his new Netflix documentary. (Erich Schlegel/Sports Illustrated/Getty Images)

that he planned to take his own life in 2016, shortly after being released by the Browns. He said he took drugs, lost about 35 pounds in less than a year, and went on “$5 million bending.” Manziel even revealed that he bought a gun, but the gun malfunctioned.

“I don’t know to this day what happened, but the gun just clicked on me,” said Manziel. “I couldn’t fix what I had done with… the NFL, with [Texas] A&M, everything. At that time I didn’t have such a good relationship with my family. The ride was over.”

Manziel, who was later diagnosed with bipolar disorder, is thankfully in a much better place now.

“I thought it was very noble of him to do what he did, because it takes courage to admit a lot of things like that,” Evans.

Evans will enter his 10th season in the league this fall. He had 1,124 receiving yards and six touchdowns last season in Tampa, his ninth consecutive season of at least 1,000 receiving yards.

“People know, I mean he’s a super talented guy,” says Evans. “I mean, obviously its time, it came and went — went really fast — and that’s hard for people to deal with. Especially since he’s the first of his kind: a rock star quarterback who hangs out with all the celebrities. Like, that’s like the first of its kind, so he was in a difficult position early on.

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