“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#89 Oct 15, 2012
T Lamina wrote:
"They do in fact recruit and segregate. They seek to control college aged students especially through their dating relationships. This "Kim" can try to deny it, but I've experienced it myself."
You should be ashamed of yourself for posting such lies. Did you fingers burn as your typed it. Xenos is all about Jesus and the freedom he offers from sin. We don't just study the word, we live it. It's only weird because so many people are about as deep as paper plates and have superficial relationships with each other.
Let's get to the nitty gritty. The fellowship is not for everyone. Like I mentioned before, Jesus offers freedom from sin, especially sexual sin. I speculate that you got yourself a boyfriend or girlfriend, started having sex and got pissed when your friends called you out on it. Get over it. Just because you got mad when your friends who loved you dearly pointed out that your were participating in actions that directly contradicted what you claimed to believe in, doesn't mean you have to go posting lies about this fellowship.
I suggest you own your own sin issues in the matter and spreading lies. Besides, God knows the truth. You can lie to others and yourself, but you can't lie to him.
I have said here repeatedly that I don't have first-hand knowledge of Xenos, but I do know they have a certain rep. I have met a few folks from Xenos who introduce themselves in groups of Christians as "followers of Jesus" rather than as members of Xenos because they are aware of the baggage that they carry. There do seem to be some indicators of cultic behavior, based on stories of people who have left if.

But, what disturbs me here is that every time someone posts claiming to be a Xenos member, they are at pains to point out that they aren't like the "other Christians," meaning superficial, Sunday-only focus and no emphasis on "living" the word. This by itself can be an indicator of cultism--the "we're different, so those other folks cannot understand us," syndrome. It not only looks a bit superior (something that many of us are guilty of at times), but also can serve as an isolating attitude. And that is exactly how cults work.
ex-xenos member

Columbus, OH

#90 Oct 16, 2012
my personal experience for this church goes as follows, i never remember hearing them be anti-Semitic, but they were very against me hanging out with anyone of a different religion or belief saying you have to tell your friends if they do not believe god is their savior then they are going to hell, i started in the high school bible study that eventually led to adult bible study, they are very close knit and picky as to who they bring into the group. dating outside the church is strictly monitored and if you plan to date they must approve of the person first and he must be a member of the church, i am not saying all are this way but i am saying that the columbus branch is indeed suspicious of cult like behavior and i would for warn anyone who plans to go there, they drag you in on kindness but after that their true colors begin to show. me and a friend were to the point that we were both outsiders of the church and finally left. i believe it was for the best. i regret using five years of my life in that church
Scott Risley

Columbus, OH

#91 Oct 23, 2012
I'm an elder and pastor at Xenos and am mainly focused on the the college and high school ministries in our church. Many of the negative and controlling things that posters have mentioned here are things that our church explicitly teaches our leaders not to do (see, for example, the last half of this paper: http://www.xenos.org/classes/leadership/leade... ).

If any of these sorts of activities are really happening in our fellowship, then I'd love to hear details so I can investigate and put a stop to them. You can contact me via facebook ( facebook.com/smrisley ).

However, I will freely admit that we teach the bible and we agree with Jesus that He is the only way to heaven (see John 14:6; Matthew 7:13-14; John 3:16-18; etc)

Also I don't see anything wrong or cult-like about people saying that we are different or distinct. When I talk with pastors from other churches they often tell me that they admire how different Xenos is - especially how committed many of our members are and how excited they are about the word.

Since: Oct 12

Lancaster, OH

#92 Oct 23, 2012
Xenos is a sect Christianity. Christianity is evil and not the Church. The faithful Children of God are called out of Christianity to follow the Lamb and receive correction and Revelation. There are children of God within false christianity. But those that enter gates of Christianity are used. Their energy is not wasted. It fuels the outer court realm of the local Church. Light is light. That is a fact Jack. Hope you are all having a good day Ohio people.
Cato duckwotrh

Columbus, OH

#93 Oct 28, 2012
Xenos is nota cult, pepole just don't like to br told what they are doing is wrong.
Max

Columbus, OH

#94 Oct 30, 2012
Yeah, I don't think so. I attended xenos every year that I possibly could there and I can assure you that it is a wonderful school. They certainly don't teach that just Jewish people are sinners. In fact everyone sins.
Plenko

Columbus, OH

#95 Oct 31, 2012
I went to xenos while I was a freshman at osu but transferred to another school out of state. I found the group that I was attending to be very controlling. They were very warm and friendly at first but if I slipped in attendance of one of the four meetings that were going on during the week because I worked and went to school I was "talked to" by one of the twenty something leaders and my commitment questioned. I was just like geez I'm doing the best I can. I would go out with some friends from high school every once in a great while and would be questioned about what I was doing by the house leader. I was just hanging out with some people. No big deal but they were all over me. The church indoctrinates you with their class offerings. God forbid you disagree with their interpretation of Daniel 9. Or any scripture for that matter. I saw a few people get asked not to come back to the church. The person was dealing with some issues but we were told not to contact that person. Seemed pretty harsh. Almost like kicking someone while they're down. The members seemed like they worshipped the guy Dennis who is the main pastor there. It was strange. He's like this 60 something old dude that hangs out with college kids late intothe night. I mean alot of people thoght that was cool but it was weird to me. They seem to grab people who are young and impressionable. I didn't realize at the time how they were slowly imposing their grip on every aspect of my thought until I moved. I would suggest your daughter stay away while she can still think for herself. The group mentality there is unlike anything I have experienced at the time or since.
Scott Risley

Columbus, OH

#96 Nov 1, 2012
Hi Plenko - My name is Scott Risley and I'm an elder at Xenos and a pastor in the college group. I'm not aware of this kind of behavior in our ministry. Can you please fill me in on more details of this situation? I'd like to investigate these claims you are making. You can contact me at facebook.com/smrisley .

Thanks!
Plenko wrote:
I went to xenos while I was a freshman at osu but transferred to another school out of state. I found the group that I was attending to be very controlling. They were very warm and friendly at first but if I slipped in attendance of one of the four meetings that were going on during the week because I worked and went to school I was "talked to" by one of the twenty something leaders and my commitment questioned. I was just like geez I'm doing the best I can. I would go out with some friends from high school every once in a great while and would be questioned about what I was doing by the house leader. I was just hanging out with some people. No big deal but they were all over me. The church indoctrinates you with their class offerings. God forbid you disagree with their interpretation of Daniel 9. Or any scripture for that matter. I saw a few people get asked not to come back to the church. The person was dealing with some issues but we were told not to contact that person. Seemed pretty harsh. Almost like kicking someone while they're down. The members seemed like they worshipped the guy Dennis who is the main pastor there. It was strange. He's like this 60 something old dude that hangs out with college kids late intothe night. I mean alot of people thoght that was cool but it was weird to me. They seem to grab people who are young and impressionable. I didn't realize at the time how they were slowly imposing their grip on every aspect of my thought until I moved. I would suggest your daughter stay away while she can still think for herself. The group mentality there is unlike anything I have experienced at the time or since.
proud latino

Westcliffe, CO

#97 Nov 1, 2012
If you think this is bad check out Mormonism, this morons are so brainwashed, just like the Wacos. They spread false prophecy. They attack the minds of innocent people. Look up the History of Joseph Smith he was a sexual predator, crystal ball gazer. This are wolves in sheep clothing.

Since: Sep 12

Hilliard, OH

#98 Nov 1, 2012
proud latino wrote:
If you think this is bad check out Mormonism, this morons are so brainwashed, just like the Wacos. They spread false prophecy. They attack the minds of innocent people. Look up the History of Joseph Smith he was a sexual predator, crystal ball gazer. This are wolves in sheep clothing.
The filthy Frito Bandito troll just can't control his hate...
Former Xenoid

Hilliard, OH

#99 Nov 2, 2012
Scott, while I think it's nice that you are making such an offer, exactly how are you planning to investigate? After all, it's the word of former members against leadership. In some cases, these examples could be from years ago. I really don't see it working out well for the people who do come forward and name names when its a he said he said situation. A lot of the people I know who have left don't trust Xenos to respect them or even listen. There is also the matter that a lot of these talks were in private with a sitting leader so it's a he said he said. I can say that the majority of reasons I hear from former members and why they left are the same. When you have many people who don't even know each other saying similar things perhaps its time to take notice. Perhaps setting up a couPle folks to inquire upon why people have left would be enlightening. Just my opinion.
Former Xenoid

Hilliard, OH

#100 Nov 2, 2012
Thanks FKA Reader! I also find it interesting that its okay for Xenoids to come on here and be downright rude to people who challenge them. One person even justified their behavior by saying they weren't perfect so it was okay to say what they did. Frankly the people who used to attend are more polite than the people who attend now. This is an excellent example of why so many are uncomfortable with coming forward. Id also like to point out that what we do in secret (commenting on this post and shredding other people) will be judged and I'm not so sure God appreciates demeaning people who challenge and disagree. Yes there is grace but that doesn't give us freedom to sin.
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
I have said here repeatedly that I don't have first-hand knowledge of Xenos, but I do know they have a certain rep. I have met a few folks from Xenos who introduce themselves in groups of Christians as "followers of Jesus" rather than as members of Xenos because they are aware of the baggage that they carry. There do seem to be some indicators of cultic behavior, based on stories of people who have left if.
But, what disturbs me here is that every time someone posts claiming to be a Xenos member, they are at pains to point out that they aren't like the "other Christians," meaning superficial, Sunday-only focus and no emphasis on "living" the word. This by itself can be an indicator of cultism--the "we're different, so those other folks cannot understand us," syndrome. It not only looks a bit superior (something that many of us are guilty of at times), but also can serve as an isolating attitude. And that is exactly how cults work.
Connie Daniels

Columbus, OH

#101 Nov 2, 2012
Concerned Parent wrote:
My daughter began attending Xenos Christian Fellowship in Columbus Ohio after one of her friends at school invited her. The church service was called a 'Central Teaching', & at this meeting the members taught my daughter that Jewish people are sinners & that the holocaust did not take place! I am extremely disgusted with what this so called Christian church is teaching to young people under the guise of being a bible centered church. I am seeking legal counsel to find out what legal recourse I have. Have any of you had anything like this occur? Please post if you know anything about this church.
I have been a member of Xenos for over 10 yrs and NO ONE has evr taught such a thing there I suspect your daughter misunderstood something, we believe and teach the Biblical principles of the Bible, nothing more..our very roots come from Jewish heritage and God knows we all believe the Holocaust did happen, I personally because my mother lived there and I would not be in a church that denied the Jews as God's chosen people or that the Holocaust happened..
Connie Daniels

Columbus, OH

#102 Nov 2, 2012
As a member of this church for over 10 years I can say that most of this stuff is just unbelievable..no where is anyone segregated in any way with the exception of being grouped by ages like most other churches do..middle school, high school, college age, and adults, this is done because they share the same experiences in life, and all younger groups have adult leaders. I would venture to say that when it comes to the youth they tend to misunderstand a lot of things, mostly because they have no reference for it as of yet.I have teens and I have heard them say things which they misunderstood about a teaching and had to explain it to them. I have one who is slightly rebellious and doesn't want to go to the teen group, we do not force her to go, Jesus did not force anyone, we shouldn't either..but I cannot control nor speak how other parents run their homes...this would be true of any church..The one thing people seem to find odd is that besides going to the Central Teaching on Sunday which is basically like any one else's church, we just do not like calling it going to church because people associate it with a building not the people and the church is God's people not a building or organization...that is religion. We teach a persoanl relationship with God/Christ thru the Holy Spirit and scripture, we pray and we have a time for questions and comments at the end..from middle school on our groups have what we call home groups who meet in each others homes on a regular basis, to have a Bible study or maybe read thru and discuss a book, can be any book written by any person about faith or christian life and it is discussed. Why Home groups? well this is a growing idea in many churches today, but Xenos has done it for many years. A small group of Christians allows for more comfort and sharing among themselves, you get to know people more closely, there needs and problems, we pray for each other and help each other, like extended family.Women and men will have separate groups that meet twice a month and they study and talk about things pertinent to them, often will have nights of just entertainment, football parties, movie nights, etc. the younger kids do this too. The idea is to have people you feel comfortable with, who understand what you go thru, etc.There is nothing unBiblical or un Christian going on and for the life of me except for people misunderstanding something for whatever reason I do not see how people think this is a cult..no one forces you to do anything, or asks you not to come unless you are deep in some sin and refusing to deal with it,(its called accountability, its Biblical) which has rarely happened. Everything is handled Biblically per the Bible nothing else..it is in fact one the more sane groups I have ever belonged to. I was raised Catholic and as a younger adult spent a few years in search of God thru new age stuff..now those are what are cults..We are very similar to Vineyard church yet I see no one calling them a cult..is it the name or what? Xenos is a Greek word which means "a foreigner, a stranger
alien (from a person or a thing)
without the knowledge of, without a share in
new, unheard of
one who receives and entertains another hospitably
with whom he stays or lodges, a host" according to Webster. as in scripture we are to treat aliens/foreigners with hospitality, and we ourselves are aliens/foreigners in the world, because we are God's children not children of this world..In the world but not of it, as scripture says.
Connie Daniels

Columbus, OH

#103 Nov 2, 2012
Former Xenoid wrote:
Thanks FKA Reader! I also find it interesting that its okay for Xenoids to come on here and be downright rude to people who challenge them. One person even justified their behavior by saying they weren't perfect so it was okay to say what they did. Frankly the people who used to attend are more polite than the people who attend now. This is an excellent example of why so many are uncomfortable with coming forward. Id also like to point out that what we do in secret (commenting on this post and shredding other people) will be judged and I'm not so sure God appreciates demeaning people who challenge and disagree. Yes there is grace but that doesn't give us freedom to sin.
<quoted text>
well since we cannot see the age of people who are posting and immaturity knows no age limit (not that I am saying anyone in particular is immature, just stating a fact). Unless you have gone to Xenos I think it is wise not to pass judgement, and if someone has gone to Xenos it is prudent to consider why they may no longer be there. I have only been a member for 10 years, but I have heard years before that there was a huge disagreement among people, not sure who all, about ..also something I do not know about, but resulted in nearly half the church members leaving to go to Vineyard. No one ever explains it, or passes judgement when I have heard about it..people should worship where they feel most comfortable is the impression I always get.that would be from adults. NOW when I hear things from teens and college age kids that's a whole other story..and it usually centers on someone being offended somehow because of their personal sins or they have totally misunderstood something altogether. When talking to people on these things you need to consider you may be talking to someone pretty young, not that their feelings are not valid, they just may not be truth. And yes no one is perfect there are parents I have seen who have some overly zealous Christian approaches for their children, etc and some who have overly liberal approaches..that would be true of any church.
Connie Daniels

Columbus, OH

#104 Nov 2, 2012
ex-xenos member wrote:
my personal experience for this church goes as follows, i never remember hearing them be anti-Semitic, but they were very against me hanging out with anyone of a different religion or belief saying you have to tell your friends if they do not believe god is their savior then they are going to hell, i started in the high school bible study that eventually led to adult bible study, they are very close knit and picky as to who they bring into the group. dating outside the church is strictly monitored and if you plan to date they must approve of the person first and he must be a member of the church, i am not saying all are this way but i am saying that the columbus branch is indeed suspicious of cult like behavior and i would for warn anyone who plans to go there, they drag you in on kindness but after that
their true colors begin to show. me and a friend were to the point that we were both outsiders of the church and finally left. i believe it was for the best. i regret using five years of my life in that church
I would be very curious to know whose home group you were in, because I have never heard anyone tell any kids such a thing and if they are I want to know who..in fact every group I have known and the one I am in encourages bringing anyone to come, no one is forced or hounded by any one to do anything. Personally I have a teen age son and 2 teenage granddaughters who have been in Xenos for 10 yrs. my son and 1 granddaughter love it, the one who was also in the same homegroup as the other girl hated it, got offended and refuses to go anymore..we don't force her or judge her for it. What she got offended over was a misunderstanding on her part but we are not going to force her to do something we want her to choose herself. I am sorry you had an experience you seem to regret but God I hope is still a big part of your life. People are not perfect, that is not an excuse it is just a fact..it has nothing to do with God. We will never be perfect, no matter how close we are to God (we get better, but never perfect, we are human) all churches are like that...Holy means set apart, different, it does not mean perfect. Thank God, he knows I am not..

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#105 Nov 2, 2012
Connie Daniels wrote:
<quoted text>
well since we cannot see the age of people who are posting and immaturity knows no age limit (not that I am saying anyone in particular is immature, just stating a fact). Unless you have gone to Xenos I think it is wise not to pass judgement, and if someone has gone to Xenos it is prudent to consider why they may no longer be there. I have only been a member for 10 years, but I have heard years before that there was a huge disagreement among people, not sure who all, about ..also something I do not know about, but resulted in nearly half the church members leaving to go to Vineyard. No one ever explains it, or passes judgement when I have heard about it..people should worship where they feel most comfortable is the impression I always get.that would be from adults. NOW when I hear things from teens and college age kids that's a whole other story..and it usually centers on someone being offended somehow because of their personal sins or they have totally misunderstood something altogether. When talking to people on these things you need to consider you may be talking to someone pretty young, not that their feelings are not valid, they just may not be truth. And yes no one is perfect there are parents I have seen who have some overly zealous Christian approaches for their children, etc and some who have overly liberal approaches..that would be true of any church.
Connie--if I might suggest, I have been in churches and other groups that have various skeletons in their closets. Generally it is some painful conflict that resulted in hurt feelings or people leaving. People don't talk about it believing that everything can just get better if it is forgotten. Frequently these kinds of things have to do with sexual scandals, or embezzlement by a trusted employee. But not always. Sometimes there are personalities or belief-systems involved.

But when you describe a rift that split the church and resulting half of the congregation going elsewhere--particularly when you suggest that you don't know why and nobody talks about it, well those kinds of things don't make for a healthy organization. And sometimes they can linger for generations without anyone being able to figure out exactly what the problem is.

But, I can tell you that there is a pretty wide impression that Xenos is, if not a cult, at least someplace to approach with caution. And I have heard this from a broad range of sources.
Connie Daniels

Columbus, OH

#106 Nov 2, 2012
Former Xenoid wrote:
Scott, while I think it's nice that you are making such an offer, exactly how are you planning to investigate? After all, it's the word of former members against leadership. In some cases, these examples could be from years ago. I really don't see it working out well for the people who do come forward and name names when its a he said he said situation. A lot of the people I know who have left don't trust Xenos to respect them or even listen. There is also the matter that a lot of these talks were in private with a sitting leader so it's a he said he said. I can say that the majority of reasons I hear from former members and why they left are the same. When you have many people who don't even know each other saying similar things perhaps its time to take notice. Perhaps setting up a couple folks to inquire
upon why people have left would be enlightening. Just my opinion.
Hope you don't mind me butting in but that is a defeatist attitude, first of all you have to consider there really may have been other complaints but no one else came forward to validate that it may be true and more than he said she said. You also are assuming that the leaders of the ministry house or home group would not still be confronted about this. If women would take this attitude (which regrettably many do) rapist would never be caught and would go on raping. and how do you expect people to sit up and take notice when yo have not told anyone other than coming on this page to do it?? What are the chances someone was going to see it that could do something about it? I saw this page today just by fluke looking up something else. It is not wrong to express you concerns or feelings in any church or anywhere else for that matter..if you and others who felt the same do not voice them while in the group or ministry house then how does it get discussed, worked out, or changed??
Former Xenoid

Hilliard, OH

#107 Nov 2, 2012
Connie - I was a member. For many years. So are several other people who have commented on this thred. I do agree there is a level of youth being easily influenced. It could be misinterpreted. But what if it isn't? There is something to be said when several former members say the same thing and I think it's unfair to say we ALL misinterpreted or, worse, that we were all in sin. I wasnt and a few folks I know werent either. Dealing with the young and pushing commitment can cause over zealous behavior. It wasn't until I was older and more confidant that I saw a lot of these issues. And don't get me wrong, I did my share of judging people "who weren't committed enough".
Connie Daniels wrote:
<quoted text>
well since we cannot see the age of people who are posting and immaturity knows no age limit (not that I am saying anyone in particular is immature, just stating a fact). Unless you have gone to Xenos I think it is wise not to pass judgement, and if someone has gone to Xenos it is prudent to consider why they may no longer be there. I have only been a member for 10 years, but I have heard years before that there was a huge disagreement among people, not sure who all, about ..also something I do not know about, but resulted in nearly half the church members leaving to go to Vineyard. No one ever explains it, or passes judgement when I have heard about it..people should worship where they feel most comfortable is the impression I always get.that would be from adults. NOW when I hear things from teens and college age kids that's a whole other story..and it usually centers on someone being offended somehow because of their personal sins or they have totally misunderstood something altogether. When talking to people on these things you need to consider you may be talking to someone pretty young, not that their feelings are not valid, they just may not be truth. And yes no one is perfect there are parents I have seen who have some overly zealous Christian approaches for their children, etc and some who have overly liberal approaches..that would be true of any church.
Connie Daniels

Columbus, OH

#108 Nov 2, 2012
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
Connie--if I might suggest, I have been in churches and other groups that have various skeletons in their closets. Generally it is some painful conflict that resulted in hurt feelings or people leaving. People don't talk about it believing that everything can just get better if it is forgotten. Frequently these kinds of things have to do with sexual scandals, or embezzlement by a trusted employee. But not always. Sometimes there are personalities or belief-systems involved.
But when you describe a rift that split the church and resulting half of the congregation going elsewhere--particularly when you suggest that you don't know why and nobody talks about it, well those kinds of things don't make for a healthy organization. And sometimes they can linger for generations without anyone being able to figure out exactly what the problem is.
But, I can tell you that there is a pretty wide impression that Xenos is, if not a cult, at least someplace to approach with caution. And I have heard this from a broad range of sources.
All I know about the rift is that it was something to do with teaching style..being more charismatic.. these people left to go to Vineyard..which hey if they want that they are happier there and our church has certainly not suffered for it and we do many service work to the community along with Vineyard.No one talks about it much because it is not that big of a deal. these things can happen. At first I was disappointed in that there was no singing, but that changed too because I was not the only one who felt that way.. Churches are not perfect because they are full of sinful people and egos with members and leaders...this is life and humanity...why we need it.I will never understand why they think it is a cult, if they came to a teaching I believe they would feel differently, it is not your normal church you grew up in, the Pastor is not the only one who prays out loud, many do...there is a time to ask questions or make comments after the teaching..there are no rituals performed like in other churches.home groups are like family you go have a meal, communion on occasion, study the Bible, everyone talks, shares and asks questions...this is how we learn and grow together...most churches is Sunday morning service, you sing, they pray, they teach, you listen and then you leave and go home and maybe show up for a Wednesday night bible study.You know very few people you speak to and it is little more than Hi how are you....I think what makes people think its a cult is we are so close like family and we treat each other like family..part of scripture is not only to do this but to be accountable to one another..if they would see me in sin and not dealing with it, they would say something to me about it, that is Biblical, that also is something no one likes to hear when they know it is true. I am not sure what all is up with these other posts, seems to me they are all young folks, and I can understand why they may feel the way they do, I wish they would address them at the time and not just leave and not have it heard or dealt with..I think it is still the feeling that you are not supposed to question someone older or maybe in a somewhat of an leader figure.That is not true. If leadership knew they will do something about it. God knows no church is perfect.

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