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Rick Zamperin: Johnny Manziel set to haunt the Tiger-Cats Friday night

Hamilton Tiger-Cats quarterback Johnny Manziel (2), right and fellow quarterback Jeremiah Masoli (8) take part in the pre-game warm up before the CFL football exhibition game against the Toronto Argonauts in Hamilton, Ontario on Friday, June 1, 2018.
Hamilton Tiger-Cats quarterback Johnny Manziel (2), right and fellow quarterback Jeremiah Masoli (8) take part in the pre-game warm up before the CFL football exhibition game against the Toronto Argonauts in Hamilton, Ontario on Friday, June 1, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Peter Power

It sounds like Johnny Manziel is going to make his first regular season start in the CFL this Friday night.

And it just so happens his former team, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, will be the opponent.

Friday’s meeting will come just over two weeks after Manziel was traded to the Montreal Alouettes in a package that sent receiver Chris Williams, defensive end Jamaal Westerman and two first-round draft picks to Hamilton.

The Als also received offensive linemen Tony Washington and Landon Rice.

READ MORE: Hamilton Tiger-Cats trade Johnny Manziel to Montreal Alouettes

After hearing that Manziel took first team reps at Alouettes practice on Monday, you can’t help but feel for those Ticats fans who were 100% behind “Johnny Football.”

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They were so excited after Hamilton landed the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner that they put down their hard-earned money to buy No. 2 Manziel jerseys, but only got a quick glimpse of the former Texas A&M phenom in Hamilton’s two pre-season games.

READ MORE: Johnny Manziel hits the Big O field for first practice day as a Montreal Alouette

Now he’s an Alouette, and even though Montreal head coach Mike Sherman isn’t willing to officially announce his starting quarterback for Friday’s match-up, he did say that “We didn’t bring [Manziel] here to watch him sit on the bench.”

I expect Manziel to start on Friday. Why? Montreal is 1-5 and they’ve been practically lifeless on offence this season.

Manziel will be able to inject some life into their offence, whether or not it translates into a win, who knows?

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The Alouettes need a spark, as do the Ticats – a team that has lost three straight games and are hoping like heck it does reach four against Manziel and the Als.