Former NFL quarterback Johnny Manziel is eager to play in the Canadian Football League and is continuing to discuss a potential contract with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, according to a source with knowledge of the situation.
"This is something he very much wants," said the source, who added that a deal could take some time.
The Tiger-Cats, who own Manziel's CFL rights, put the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner through a series of workouts over two days in Buffalo but opted against signing him, ESPN's Kevin Seifert reported Wednesday.
Kent Austin, Hamilton's vice president of football operations, said he'll consider Manziel as an option for the future, but "that's not imminent. We're not signing Johnny right now." Austin added that Manziel did some "good things" in the workout and has talent.
The Cleveland Browns released Manziel, 24, in March 2016 after two turbulent years with the team. Manziel fell out of favor with coaches due to inconsistent game preparation and a nightlife often documented on social media.
Manziel, who was out of football last year, faced a four-game suspension entering the 2016 season for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy. In December, the Dallas County district attorney's office agreed to drop a domestic violence charge against Manziel if he met certain conditions. The charge, stemming from an altercation with an ex-girlfriend, could result in a personal conduct suspension if Manziel returns to the NFL.
With no NFL workouts on his schedule, Manziel is focused on getting back to football and considers the CFL a good landing spot, the source said.
TSN reported that the Tiger-Cats believe Manziel has "too many red flags" to sign him. The source said that the team might have reservations based on Manziel's past, but showed enthusiasm about the quarterback during meetings with him.
Manziel, a former first-round pick, threw for 1,675 yards, seven touchdowns and seven interceptions on 57 percent passing in 14 NFL games and eight starts.
The Tiger-Cats, who are 0-8 on the season and recently hired former Hawai'i and Southern Methodist coach June Jones to redirect the on-field product, can continue to carry Manziel on their negotiation list or trade his rights to another team. The Tiger-Cats also hold the rights to free-agent quarterbacks Robert Griffin III and Colin Kaepernick.
This week, the Tiger-Cats reversed an attempt to hire former Baylor coach Art Briles as offensive coordinator amid outcry over Briles' role in Baylor's handling of sexual assault allegations by students, particularly football players.
ESPN's Kevin Seifert contributed to this report.