Although the two quarterbacks will split reps, the Cleveland Browns coaching staff has announced Brian Hoyer, not Johnny Manziel, will start Monday night against the Washington Redskins. After an inconclusive Week 1 preseason game, fans were wondering whether Manziel would get the nod in Week 2.
Browns Head Coach Mike Pettine got ahead of the rumor train by releasing an official statement that said he and his staff are “comfortable” with Hoyer starting their Monday Night game against the Redskins.
“I think it’s a little overblown as to who the starter is going to be,” Pettine said. “The key component, as I’ve stated earlier this week, is that we are going to balance the reps. We will play it a little by ear as it goes on, we haven’t truly decided as far as the rotation but the goal is, for when we look at the stat sheet at halftime, that they both have the same amount of repetitions and hopefully they both get a good amount of work.”
Although Hoyer and Manziel will be splitting reps, it won’t be due to the Browns’ first and second teams also sharing reps. In actuality, Cleveland plans to split the first-team reps 50/50 between the two QBs.
The rumor mill ran wild when Manziel first took first-team snaps during preseason practice. At the time Pettine said it was “part of the plan” to test their two would-be starting QBs. It’s apparent now that his comment should’ve been taken at face value, as the Browns will continue to share the first-team reps between Hoyer and Manziel.
Manziel looked shell-shocked when he first stepped on the field last weekend, though he got more comfortable as the game went on. Johnny Football ended the loss against the Lions 7-for-11 for 63 yards. He also led the Browns in rushing, with 27 yards on six carries.
Manziel was blasted on ESPN’s The Herd with Colin Cowherd this week for making one of those rushing attempts when he had a receiver wide open who could’ve gained more yards. Whether he received similar criticism or got the green light for such behavior during film sessions this week will be apparent as he takes the field against the Redskins on Monday night.
Are you expecting Manziel to perform better with a week under his belt? Or will he continue to struggle to adapt to the pro game and any criticism he may have received from the Browns coaching staff this week? Brian Hoyer, not Johnny Manziel, will start Monday night, but will that be the last time we see Johnny Football coming off the bench? Share your thoughts in the comments below.