Riders head coach Jones denies CFL club worked out Johnny Manziel

Riders deny working out Johnny Manziel

REGINA — Saskatchewan Roughriders head coach Chris Jones has denied a report that the Saskatchewan Roughriders illegally worked out former NFL quarterback Johnny Manziel.

“The Saskatchewan Roughriders have not held or attended a workout involving Johnny Manziel,” Jones, who’s also the team’s general manager, said in a statement. “With that, I will not be commenting further on the report.”

Football blog 3 Down Nation reported Thursday that the Riders worked out Manziel in Florida last month prior to the Senior Bowl. Manziel is an NFL free agent, having been released in 2016 after two seasons with the Cleveland Browns.

But the former Heisman Trophy winner remains on the negotiation list of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, which gives them CFL exclusivity to him. The report added the Riders didn’t secure permission from the Ticats to put Manziel through his paces.

The CFL says it’s looking into the situation.

“We are investigating,” Paulo Senra, the CFL director of communications, said in a statement. “The Riders tell us that they did not work out Manziel.

“So at this point, it appears the report is false. Should other evidence come to light, we will deal with it accordingly.”

In August, the Riders were fined $60,000 and had over $26,000 deducted from their $5.1-million salary cap after being found guilty by the CFL of roster violations.

The Canadian Press

Canadian Press