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Browns should have made Manziel the starter from Day One

Manziel AP

In an effort to not create a monster, the Browns may have made a mess.

Two years ago, Washington immediately installed quarterback Robert Griffin III as the team’s starter.  And Griffin, who instantly rose to superstardom in D.C., ended up being not quite as coachable as former offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan may have wanted.

With Shanahan now in Cleveland and the Browns taking the biggest celebrity quarterback in this year’s draft, the Browns may have consciously opted to do the opposite, humbling Johnny Manziel in the hopes that, as he earns the job, he’ll learn to listen to an offensive coordinator with a reputation for wanting the offense to be run the way he wants it.  Indeed, Coach Mike Pettine hinted at a desire to avoid Manziel Mania when defending in June the team’s decision not to install Manziel immediately as the starter.

“When people criticize how we handled it, what’s the alternative?” Pettine told USA Today at the time.  “Would it have been more prudent for us the night we drafted him to name him the starter?  And have him come in here and let the media have access to him every day and have a huge press conference for him?  Handle him that way?”

Time has shown that it doesn’t matter whether Manziel is the starter or merely competing for the job.  Media interest attaches naturally to his name, especially with the quarterback decision nudging toward a regular-season decision that hardly will be final.

And if the Browns opted to use a quarterback competition to humble Manziel, the splitting of first-team reps during practice and regular-season games has made it harder for Manziel or Brian Hoyer to be as prepared as the starter would be if the starter had been named right out of the gates.

Surely, it would have been Manziel.  Otherwise, the Browns wouldn’t have traded up from No. 26 to No. 22 to add a quarterback.  They would have opted to ride with Hoyer and use the pick on someone who could help the team at another position.

By trading up for Manziel, the Browns made their choice.  By not following through with it, the Browns have made it harder for Manziel to be ready for the job that they’d hoped to hand him as of Week One.  Now, they may have to go with an equally unprepared Brian Hoyer and hope he doesn’t play so well that it becomes impossible to use Manziel at any point in 2014, or to start 2015.

Browns fans know that dynamic all too well from seven years ago, when Derek Anderson made it impossible to use Brady Quinn in 2007, setting the stage for a controversy in 2008 from which the team still hasn’t fully recovered.

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226 Responses to “Browns should have made Manziel the starter from Day One”
  1. hrdcorbengalsfan says: Aug 19, 2014 10:56 PM

    Enough! It is becoming more and more lame! Cut the crap already. Who really cares?

  2. troy43mvp says: Aug 19, 2014 10:57 PM

    RG3 was the 2nd pick of the draft. Different situation all together.

  3. joeflaccoallday says: Aug 19, 2014 10:58 PM

    Thank you Florio. Agree 100%. People don’t understand how QB competitions take away reps for a certain player and how they not beneficial at times. I like the idea of giving him a shot for the job but they should stated that from the beginning instead of changing their opinion of him being a backup.

  4. bonnovi says: Aug 19, 2014 10:58 PM

    They should have either made him starter from Day One or had him sit on the bench his rookie year (Or at least most of the season). Doing it this way just created a circus.

  5. cazmosis says: Aug 19, 2014 11:05 PM

    Yeah, just put him out there, screw it. The Browns are going no where and they act like this decision could be crucial to their success. Johnny doesnt carelessly throw the ball away and you can tell he’s careful with it. He’s playing with the worst backups in the leauge and people are laughing that he isnt looking like Elway. He’s undersized playing with losers, WHAT DO YOU EXPECT!? Make him the starter, it’ll be the only halfway decent thing the team has going for it.

  6. magicmtndan says: Aug 19, 2014 11:05 PM

    Yeah, let Johnny Football run the team instead of the owner, management and coaches.

  7. letsberealpeople says: Aug 19, 2014 11:06 PM

    Disagree. They should still start Hoyer.

    If you name Manziel the starter, and he struggles, and you are forced to bench him, you might end his career early.

    Bring him later after he has learned the game, and/or expectations are low, so you can avoid giving him the hook and shattering his confidence and career.

  8. steelhammer92 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:08 PM

    It’s still too early to tell whether the Browns have handled this whole thing correctly or not… However, this franchise has shown time and time again it has no ability to make the correct decisions. Entering their 15th season since coming back, they have yet to find a coach or QB… They’ve produced only a small handful of Pro Bowlers over the years.. Even their ownership has been a clown show.

    Here we are now.. We have a coach who was at least the 4th or 5th choice of the franchise.. A rookie QB, who for all intents and purposes, likely was a pick heavily influenced by the owner rather than the coaching staff. Possibly the most talented player they’ve had in 15 years is on brink of missing the entire season due to suspension, and possibly beyond.

  9. arnoldziffel says: Aug 19, 2014 11:10 PM

    Why do so many members of the sports media seem to have the need to act like frustrated wanna-be coaches?

    The real coaches are with these players practically 24-7 … for every practice and every meeting – they ought to know what’s best for their teams … not these media guys who have no stake in the outcome.

    Coaches should coach .. media people should just report and then shut the hell up.

  10. nykfanwakemeupin2015 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:10 PM

    damned if you do damned if you dont

  11. otistaylor89 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:10 PM

    Hoyer is coming off ACL surgery and Manziel is rookie trying to learn a new playbook – why is everybody so impatient?

  12. bradyisyourdaddy says: Aug 19, 2014 11:12 PM

    Manziel’s a joke…

    Hoyer gives you leadership and a chance to win

  13. mazenblue says: Aug 19, 2014 11:12 PM

    wish manziel went to the cowboys. oh the drama that would have caused.

  14. banlarson says: Aug 19, 2014 11:15 PM

    Why, all he is going to do is fail and the fans will turn against him and he’ll be done. Let him sit on the bench for a year, maybe two after what he has shown in pre-season so far. He’ll get eaten alive in a real game.

  15. canetic says: Aug 19, 2014 11:16 PM

    Please. Manziel is not ready. Hoyer can compete. That’s why Manziel has not been named the starter.

  16. shelovesfootball says: Aug 19, 2014 11:18 PM

    Ponder 2.0
    You never name them the starter. I’m just a chick and I know more than you!

  17. gloryfromheaven46 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:19 PM

    Why? He sometimes looks lost out there on the field. Hoyer has spent time under Brady and looked pretty good last year until his big injury. He has the experience and if all things go wrong THEN you put Manziel in…

  18. texansdan says: Aug 19, 2014 11:20 PM

    Well said. What a mess. What had been touted as a real competition has turned into a disaster with neither QB prepared and in sync with the offense.

  19. jasonatomic says: Aug 19, 2014 11:20 PM

    What a disaster.

  20. jimbo75025 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:21 PM

    If Hoyer ends up starting-and does well long term, I am not so sure the Browns will be heartbroken. If drafting Manziel in the first is what it took to find a long term QB1 (even if they already had him on the roster), I do not really see it as a great tragedy.

    Face it, these days a backup QB may be the third or fourth highest paid person on the roster following the starting QB and a few receivers. Manziel would certainly be affordable as a backup QB on his rookie deal.

  21. thestrategyexpert says: Aug 19, 2014 11:21 PM

    Or they could have traded Hoyer before or during the draft when more teams were in the market for a QB. That way they could have got equal value for Hoyer while eliminating these headache liabilities for an automatic advantage. But since they didn’t do that they must have wanted this drama. And they could have found other QBs for cheap or free, perhaps somebody like Jimmy Clausen off the street to take Hoyer’s spot, then use Hoyer’s value to get extra help.

    Also if you are going to draft somebody like Manziel I just feel it’s more suitable to have an offensive-minded HC and one that is a QB guru.

  22. corky2141 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:21 PM

    Brady Quinn – pick #22, Johnny Manziel – pick #22. Both in messy rookie situations. Maybe this time it’ll work out, but then again they used pick #22 on Brandon Weedon & inserted him in as starter and that didn’t work either

  23. hurricanegrabowski says: Aug 19, 2014 11:22 PM

    Trading up for a person doesn’t automatically mean they should be a starter. And comparing RGIII, a top 3 talent, to a guy in Manziel who was highly divisive, isn’t wise. The Browns want Manziel to earn his position, while they may not have handled it correctly this whole time, isn’t that how the NFL operates? People earn jobs through their play, keep jobs through their play, and eventually lose them from their play?

  24. numba1wiscosportsfan says: Aug 19, 2014 11:22 PM

    o rly?

  25. metalhead65 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:22 PM

    the big difference is Brady Quinn sucked and Manziel will get the job and not and not look back when he does. if they name hoyer and the steelers destroy them it is overfor him and the Johnny Football era begins.

  26. laxer37 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:23 PM

    The Browns would have been much better off using the Manziel pick on a wide receiver to replace Gordon and giving Hoyer all of the first team reps in camp.

    Unfortunately the Browns (and their fans) prefer a media circus instead of a guys that can actually help the team now.

  27. tjacks7 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:23 PM

    What? When the Browns drafted Manziel, they thought they had a competent QB in Hoyer.. As did most of us who watched him last year. A lot has changed since then. Hoyer has looked horrible, but Manziel hasn’t looked any better.

    Say what you want about the Browns but they’ve handled this as well as they could have without being able to foresee the future. Can’t really blame them for giving Hoyer and Manziel an opportunity to earn the job and having both fall completely flat on their face.

    At this point, you can only blame the Browns for drafting Manziel. He does not look ready to play. At all.

  28. florsht says: Aug 19, 2014 11:23 PM

    Direction is something the Browns do not understand.

  29. oldbrowndawg says: Aug 19, 2014 11:23 PM

    Baloney. You must have forgotten how many rookie QBs that Dick LeBeau’s defense has destroyed over the past decade or so. If you start Manziel on Sept 7th in Pittsburgh and Manziel doesn’t develop, it’ll ruin him for all time. If, on the other hand, you start the veteran Brian Hoyer for the regular season and after 3 or 4 starts it doesn’t work out, you can then install Manziel as the starter and let him play the rest of the season. Can’t work the other way around.

  30. The Bronx Bombers says: Aug 19, 2014 11:23 PM

    Bust…

  31. clebrowns216 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:25 PM

    Thank you.

    Sitting on the bench doesn’t make you better. Not sure where that ridiculous idea came from. Because Aaron Rodgers say and happens to be good?

    The only way to get better is to take snaps. Backups don’t take reps at practice during the season. It’s hard enough to get your starter enough reps to prepare him in a week.

  32. pfu2 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:27 PM

    Majority of Browns fans have actually believed in Hoyer & never even expected or wanted Manziel to be thrown in to the wolves! Browns fans have seen too many rookie QB’s have the same fate & actually want the Browns to take their time this time around. Bring Manziel along slowly & start him in his second season like Kaepernick, let him really learn the intricacies of the Shanahan system, then place him in the starting role. The media is responsible for really turning this into a QB battle & a media circus. The real Browns fans knew it would be Hoyer all along!

  33. justintuckrule says: Aug 19, 2014 11:28 PM

    The browns are “Mush” from The Bronx Tale. It wouldn’t have mattered what they did, it wouldn’t have worked. They’re cursed.

  34. terryleather says: Aug 19, 2014 11:28 PM

    How about we wait until he actually plays in an NFL game that counts before we make any definitive statements about his career?

    Given the way that Griffin was handed the job, and has steadily gotten worse as a player, it seemed wise at the time to not follow that blueprint.

  35. noburghfan says: Aug 19, 2014 11:30 PM

    Sad , but true ?

  36. KIR says: Aug 19, 2014 11:31 PM

    There’s one common denominator…..

  37. florsht says: Aug 19, 2014 11:32 PM

    The Browns have a history of not knowing how to plan to use their QB’s. They are a QB sinkhole.

  38. mikeyhigs says: Aug 19, 2014 11:32 PM

    I know its fun to jump on Johnny Manziel. I sure do. But, at what point does the finger start pointing at Kyle Shanahan? Is he really a good OC? I’m not so sure.

  39. zygizag says: Aug 19, 2014 11:33 PM

    In Johnny F you have a guy who has never had a playbook. HELLO!!! It is going to take him a while to get the hang of it, (if he ever does)like at least a year.

    He may be great. He may be a bust. But putting him out there now as #1 is like asking him to fail and even worse get killed.

    Yes Fran the Man, ran around, but he had more, talent, more skill around him, and he knew the play-book.

    Unless you are going to run a no playbook offense he should not be # 1. If you run a no playbook offense for long in the NFL you will have no QB.

    I hope Johnny F survives his first few years.

  40. holdsteady76 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:34 PM

    Except he’s done nothing to demonstrate maturity or an understanding of the playbook, and Hoyer actually played really well last year. But logic aside, sure why not.

  41. brend0 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:35 PM

    The Hawks did it with Wilson and it worked out pretty well

  42. hanspard says: Aug 19, 2014 11:35 PM

    All of this is a bunch of crap. The guy would have the job if he EARNED it. He looks very, very average, and not ready. The reason Brady Quinn was a mess? He never earned the job. Same thing, he wasn’t very good. Don’t act like how it was doled out would have changed anything…if the guy was good he would play. He’s not. Period. Only average quarterbacks get caught up in “QB controversies”. The rest go out there and win the job, and that’s that.

  43. thingamajig says: Aug 19, 2014 11:36 PM

    By moving up from 26 to 22 makes him the sure fired starter. Sorry but that assumption is a big stretch.

  44. pittsburgh84 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:39 PM

    So are you saying it would work out better for the Browns if they told him he was the starter and he didn’t have to spend so much time preparing?

    Because I’m pretty sure he’d much rather be in South Beach or Vegas or at Keyshawn’s neighbor’s house than doing the work Hoyer is.

  45. swagger52 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:44 PM

    Yes…In the non-NFL world this is known as FAIL FASTER

  46. kaeptaincrunch says: Aug 19, 2014 11:45 PM

    No.

  47. lordfletcher says: Aug 19, 2014 11:45 PM

    Tebow .2

  48. swagger52 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:46 PM

    General Schwarkopf should be the GM for the Browns.

    The General would have known that other than having no elusiveness, no accuracy and no ability to see Ed Reed lining him up, Brady Quinn would have made an excellent QB. It wasn’t that he didnt’ have a proper chance.

  49. coltzfan166 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:46 PM

    On top of this, they could have traded Hoyer and gotten something for him.

  50. grantsbuds says: Aug 19, 2014 11:48 PM

    How horribly short sighted. Two years as a college starter makes no QB NFL ready, especially from a spread offense. Didn’t AR sit for three years? Wasn’t his first year still laden with a learning curve? How long did Brady sit? Throwing Johnny to the wolves isn’t how successful NFL QBs are born.

  51. txbearmeat says: Aug 19, 2014 11:49 PM

    bbbb…ust! I look forward to watching this Dumpster Fire play out.

    I only wish it’d been the Vikings that would have gotten this clown. Bridgewater actually could be halfway decent one day.

    Then again, it IS the Hapless and Tasteless Vikings. They’ll find a way to screw it up.

  52. ghost26 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:49 PM

    ‘Browns fans know that dynamic all too well from seven years ago, when Derek Anderson made it impossible to use Brady Quinn in 2007, setting the stage for a controversy in 2008 from which the team still hasn’t fully recovered.’

    That’s ridiculous. Derek Anderson had one decent season but he’s a JAG like Hoyer. They Browns haven’t recovered b/c they haven’t been able to find a QB who is good enough to be a legitimate starter.

  53. doggeatdogg says: Aug 19, 2014 11:51 PM

    I couldn’t agree more. Your draft move should reflect your intentions. You don’t draft a QB in the first round the ride the bench. By the same token, they are discovering Manziel may not be quite ready. This puts the Browns in a bit of a quandary.

    The Hoyer/Manziel pairing is not the same as the Anderson / Quinn situation. Anderson did do some things int he NFL. Hoyer is less proven so the choice should have been easier this time around for the Brown. Too many head games going on and if they are not careful, they will lose their handle on Manziel.

  54. raiders4ever says: Aug 19, 2014 11:52 PM

    no way..I say Hoyer has the experiance and has proven he can win in real games…he does what he has to it seemed to me then he got hurt…not saying give up on Manziel but let him watch from sidelines for a year if possible…

  55. skittlesareyum says: Aug 19, 2014 11:55 PM

    I don’t get the issue. If Hoyer is playing better then play him for now. It’s that simple. I don’t see why Hoyer is “equally unprepared”, either.

    There’s no need to rush a rookie QB into a game, especially if he’s missing his #1 wideout. There will be plenty of time to play him later in the season.

  56. jtreddog says: Aug 19, 2014 11:55 PM

    The Browns are once again irrelevant in the grand scheme of the 2014 season…merely a footnote…which means their decision of a starting QB is less than irrelevant (if that’s possible?)…incredibly boring and ludicrous

  57. cccpsimian says: Aug 19, 2014 11:55 PM

    Manziel’s a joke. He’s small, his speed has been negated by the step up to the NFL, he’s never had a particularly impressive arm, and he has the mentality of a coddled fourth grader. Hoyer’s barely a backup on any team with a true signal caller under center.

    Surprise, surprise… the Browns are a dumpster fire. While this may be more entertaining than recent iterations of the Cleveland club, this is nothing new.

  58. captainwisdom8888 says: Aug 19, 2014 11:57 PM

    When you look at the Cleveland QB situation very simply, this is what it boils down to…the Browns are not a team that will be competing for a Super Bowl this season, and they used a 1st round selection on a QB who they hope can lead the franchise in the right direction. The quickest way an NFL team can change their fortunes for the better is by acquiring a QB who can take the team to the next level, a guy who can elevate the players around him. There will undoubtedly be some growing pains for the kid, but even despite that…the Browns have absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain by making Manziell the starter for Week 1. He needs to begin learning all the nuances of playing QB in the NFL, and what he can and cannot get away with while competing against better defenses than he’s ever faced in his life.

    If the Browns genuinely believe that Manziell has what it takes to someday bring the team to the playoffs and beyond…than starting Brian Hoyer only slows down the entire process.

  59. campcouch says: Aug 19, 2014 11:58 PM

    Obviously Manziel has gotten more opportunities with the offense, 1st and 2nd team. He’s produced the only TD between the two of them and even told the ‘Skins bench they were kicking an extra point. He’s starting week one. Hoyer played not even 5 quarters of football last year and his numbers weren’t staggering. As long as Manziel isn’t releasing the dove to his teammates and keeps them in games, I’m sure they’ll look past his quirks. Spot play doesn’t help any QB, as soon as he gets a couple of complete games under his belt, he’ll be alright. Besides, their biggest concern is getting their other CBs healthy.

  60. edavidberg says: Aug 20, 2014 12:01 AM

    The should have drafted Bridgewater.

  61. JSpicoli says: Aug 20, 2014 12:01 AM

    Nonsense

  62. gambler28 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:04 AM

    Hahaha. Yeah, it was The Great Anderson-Quinn Controversy of 2008 that really set this franchise back. That is why this team has been such a train wreck. Good call there.

    Couldn’t have anything to do with them making a bunch of comical coaching and front office hires (they are on their FIFTH coach since 2008; that’s insane!) during that time.

  63. philipdebin says: Aug 20, 2014 12:06 AM

    Good day to be a Jags fan.

  64. norcalseahawkfan says: Aug 20, 2014 12:06 AM

    Just another media hyped chump, Just see Tim Tebo or tevo, so far no reruns of that overblowen loser.
    Must really suck that they missed on RW

  65. mrplow3 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:11 AM

    Manuel has played bad this preseason and acted even worse. Put him on the bench. His contract isn’t even big, if he never starts a game they will barely feel it financially

  66. bsizemore68 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:11 AM

    They are the Browns, there is no cure for them, a new coach almost every year, a new GM almost every year, new owner and the fans deserve better then what they are face with. Bill

  67. jmc8888 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:12 AM

    It’s not so black and white.

    They could have easily said there was no competition, and that Hoyer was the starting QB. If somehow something changed, they could change. This is what Seattle did with Wilson. But that clearly isn’t happening.

    It’s pretty crazy to say the reason Hoyer or Manziel isn’t performing well is because of the competition. That’s a cop out. They suck because they suck.

    Manziel clearly isn’t ready, and may never be. Hoyer knows how to run an offense and is well schooled, but he is a backup QB and basically at his ceiling.

    They made it a competition, because the truth is, they have no QB. If you don’t know for sure by the time training camp hits, then YOU DON’T HAVE ONE. (and realistically, much sooner then that…by FA/Draft)

    The only error after that they really made was in how they split the duties last night. They can have one guy start and the other backup, but don’t switch them every series. That’s nuts. If it means the 1′s have to stay out there longer, so be it. Knowing who your QB is, is more important. Plus this would only affect the offensive side.

    The other way is to have one start one game, and another start the other game. Alternate. They didn’t want to do that.

    There is no perfect situation in this. They don’t know, because they didn’t secure a SURE starting QB before now. They are trying to decide from a backup and a guy who clearly isn’t ready and may never be.

    Neither QB has shown ANYTHING. They should of went with the veteran and made it a silent competition where no one knows. If a guy is going to be a starting QB, he is easily going to show you enough to know he is better then a journeyman backup.

    So no, they didn’t need to automatically make him their starter when they drafted him, you can’t make crazy calls like that. You start who is best.

    Also a clue, in the NFL, to an NFL GM, at least the ones who aren’t morons, every player on the team is in competition with each other, every year. You go by that, not because you drafted this person or signed that person or whatever. You make sure he knows how to play football and/or still can, and that he’s the best for the job. If you don’t do that, you won’t know what hit you, because you weren’t looking.

  68. geefan1 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:13 AM

    “By trading up for Manziel, the Browns made their choice. ”

    But that’s a long-term choice. It’s not about who starts week one.

  69. gambler28 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:14 AM

    You have been banging the drum since the draft that “Well, they took him in the first round so he HAS TO be the starter.” That’s completely ridiculous.

    This is not rocket science. Look at the best QBs in the game – Brady, Brees, Rodgers, Rivers, Eli, Romo – and they all sat the bench and learned. Sure, there are exceptions (Ryan, Peyton, Big Ben, Luck) but for everyone one of those exceptions there are five Sanchez’s, Weeden’s, Ponder’s and Gabbert’s that completely flamed out when thrown into action too early. And guys like Manuel, Smith, Tannehill and Locker are currently killing their franchises because they were thrown in too early, are terrible, and are getting 1,000 chances because they were high draft picks.

    If you look at the recent quarterbacks that started immediately (Wilson, Newton, Dalton) and had some success they all have the same thing in common behind that success: a Top 10 defense, excellent offensive line and rock solid running game.

    So basically, if you aren’t drafted onto one of the best rosters in the NFL you need to sit and learn for a couple of years. I would rather have a 26- or 28-year-old that knows what he’s doing than a 21-year-old punk that has no clue what the NFL is about.

  70. edelmanfanclub says: Aug 20, 2014 12:17 AM

    Why hand some punk the keys to a car he shouldn’t be driving? If Manziel can live a crazy life style on and off the field, that’s fine it’s his life. But grow up man, don’t flip people the bird and don’t get caught partying in season. You know all cameras are on you.

  71. camdenyard says: Aug 20, 2014 12:18 AM

    Poor, poor Clowns!

  72. movethesticks76 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:20 AM

    More like they should never had signed this bum in the first place! He’s a ego maniac and it’s about him and if the Browns can’t see this then they deserve what they get.

  73. jermainewiggins says: Aug 20, 2014 12:22 AM

    Why would anyone in their right minds want the browns to have named a starter a long time ago?? Because I love hearing about this qb competition over and over and over and over

  74. kerzondax says: Aug 20, 2014 12:24 AM

    I have learned over the years that when there is a clown show, it really doesn’t matter in which order the clowns emerge from the car.

  75. drummer1279 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:25 AM

    I disagree. I think the pressure is there to play Manziel, mostly from the media, some fans, and maybe even the owner, but you have to see what they bring to the table. Hoyer I think is the better QB at this point, and I think the Browns would be wise to sit J-Football until he matures a bit, or perhaps a lot.

    Of course if he falters (Hoyer) or get’s hurt, then you have the excuse to bring JF/JM in quicker, but I think it’d be a mistake handing him the job at this point. His ego is bigger than his game, and his game doesn’t match NFL caliber. A year or two, of having to work and own it will prove if he has it or not. I hope it works out for the Browns, not a fan of theirs, but they sure could use some luck for a change.

  76. jayovalentine says: Aug 20, 2014 12:26 AM

    Washington Huskies or Washington REDSKINS ??

  77. rajbais says: Aug 20, 2014 12:26 AM

    Or have them split 1st reps from the beginning and then decide the starter.

    After all, it wasn’t that bad for Philly. It did it that way.

  78. bryantrulen says: Aug 20, 2014 12:26 AM

    Mike, I am from Paul Allen Country (Corn Country) but how is Hoyer is not the guy from Day 1? Based upon his poise,quick release and accuracy form last year?

  79. taintedsaints2009 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:27 AM

    I hope he takes a giant dump on every opposing field he plays on

  80. dennisatunity says: Aug 20, 2014 12:33 AM

    Yeah, I see what you mean. The flipping of the finger, throwing behind wide open receivers, missing receivers deep. Yeah, of course, they should have made him number one right away. Absolutely no sense in making him earn it or anything.

  81. roadbiscuit says: Aug 20, 2014 12:35 AM

    Failed lawyers with an authoritarian moralistic dick up their asses should give up the role of Advisor to NFL teams.

  82. gadgetking2010 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:35 AM

    <>

    oh yeah… forgot about Brady Quinn too !!

    yeah because that worked so well with Weeden, McCoy, Frye, and Couch

  83. Michael says: Aug 20, 2014 12:36 AM

    If they would have handled him the same way Shanny Jr handled RG3, you’d be criticizing them for that too, asking him why he didn’t learn his lesson the first time around…

  84. omniscient48 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:48 AM

    Looks to me like he should be 3rd QB behind Shaw and Hoyer.

  85. laurencejn says: Aug 20, 2014 12:51 AM

    Sounds like one big excuse for Manziel playing like garbage! Ever consider the possibility that he cannot make the jump to the pros and will suck in the NFL?!
    I think that’s the reality!

  86. harveyredman says: Aug 20, 2014 12:51 AM

    Start Manziel already… sink or swim brother. God Bless you and good luck. It’s a man’s League now!

  87. sambradfordismyhomeboy says: Aug 20, 2014 12:51 AM

    So, since JAX took Bortles at #3 overall you’re saying they should start him from day one? However NFL experts are agreeing with the coaches w\ JAX to have him sit and learn. if Mr Money Phone can handle the heat then throw him into the fire. But to try and justify it’s because CLE moved up 3 spots in the lower half of the first round has no credence. Money Phone should start because of play in training camp and exhibition games and maturity level… and after his Hallmark greeting one fingered salute last night, hopefully he sits for a while and grows up.
    Hoyer – 1st
    Grossman – 2nd
    Manziel – 3rd
    Shaw – Practice Squad (CLE do NOT release this guy)

  88. hoyerthedestroyer says: Aug 20, 2014 12:52 AM

    That’s garbage, purely to get more comments. Jax drafted their quarterback #3 but where’s the outcry that he may not start year one?

    What late round quarterback (#22) was immediately inserted day 1 of training camp as the starter the past 10 years outside of Luck (#1) and RG3 (#2)? Tannehill (#12) was close but earned it after the preseason of other crappy QBs, and he was much higher than Manziel.

    What is the media obsession with making Manziel the starter before he develops and calling him a bust before his first season starts? Does one preseason game make a career because it’s the only game the national audience saw?

  89. 1dragonstorm says: Aug 20, 2014 12:54 AM

    he is a disaster waiting to happen

  90. hoyerthedestroyer says: Aug 20, 2014 12:55 AM

    By the way, Brady Quinn stunk in college, so sitting the bench wasn’t the reason he failed at every stop after. Browns can only hope Hoyer plays so well to have time to develop Johnny.

  91. thefox61 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:56 AM

    They didn’t need to trade up in first place, they would’ve got Manziel at 26 anyway. The Browns probably could’ve used the pick at 22 on a much better player and STILL got Manziel in he 2nd round. He’s not that good. And some people wonder why he dropped in the draft…

  92. fluffybunny74 says: Aug 20, 2014 1:20 AM

    Might as well call them the Jets.

  93. jeremycrowhurst says: Aug 20, 2014 1:24 AM

    If there’s a lesson to be learned from Brady Quinn, it’s that you can’t put a rookie QB on the field when you have no NFL-quality receivers. It ruins the QB’s development.

    I hate Johnny Manziel, so by all means yes, name him the starter and give him all 16 starts.

  94. jfkresearcher says: Aug 20, 2014 1:24 AM

    The media would be crying the opposite if he had made him the starter to begin with and he had perfomed like this against Washington. Oh he should have earned the job. Blah blah blah. Manziel will start if and when he is ever ready. Period.

  95. bluestar4ever says: Aug 20, 2014 1:24 AM

    This is just absurd. You do not hand a rookie who hasn’t proven anything a starting job the day after the draft. That’s how a coaching staff loses a locker room.

  96. bert1913 says: Aug 20, 2014 1:26 AM

    with his attitude, the browns should make him earn it.

  97. slugbaitspace says: Aug 20, 2014 1:28 AM

    Seahawks did the same thing as the Browns, placing Russell Wilson third on the depth chart after drafting him.

    Wilson won the starting job by Week 1.

    Brady had his shot with the Browns. Couldn’t win the job in 2007. Forget about the 2008 “controversy”. He won the QB competition in 2009, and played just well enough to be benched halfway thru the third game.

    Brady had chances with Broncos, Chiefs, Seahawks, Jets and Rams. Fail everywhere. Now he’s with the Dolphins. Jeez, these jokes almost write themselves, don’t they?

    If Johnny was good enough to be the starter, he’d have taken control of the situation immediately.

    He didn’t do that.

  98. tolan04 says: Aug 20, 2014 1:29 AM

    No hoyer should have and Johnny primarily with the 2s. Johnny football is a sham.

  99. 4512dawg4512 says: Aug 20, 2014 1:31 AM

    Should have kept Weeden, gotten the front office together, found a #1 WR paid attention in D.A.R.E and found an O-coordinator that wasn’t afraid to have receivers run routes longer than five and a half yards. Oh and call me crazy but let’s try keeping a head coach around for longer than one year….. This season had 3-13 written all over it

  100. yesrowntreeyesgrosvener says: Aug 20, 2014 1:49 AM

    Now, they may have to go with an equally unprepared Brian Hoyer and hope he doesn’t play so well that it becomes impossible to use Manziel at any point in 2014, or to start 2015.

    Hope? Why? If Hoyer does well, you either have your future, trade bait, or terrific depth when Manziel takes over. I’m not following you here.

  101. jeffesky says: Aug 20, 2014 1:53 AM

    Look the Browns brain trust is so bad Mike Holmgren couldn’t turn it around , they wouldn’t let him. This team and johny footballitis may win 5 games this year and next perhaps 4 as they all will get the picture that is the Browns. Name the teams that have never been in a Super Bowl and then list the year they were founded. If good ole Ernest hadn’t fumbled who knows.

  102. urbusted2 says: Aug 20, 2014 1:56 AM

    The premise of this article is simply flawed. Do you think the Browns should write off the season completely just to provide Manziel some sort of experience? Picking Manziel at #22 wasn’t inferring that he was going to be the starter in 2014. Hoyer should have been named the starter and the mistake the Browns made was drafting Manziel. How can anyone that knows anything about football watch this kid and say he’s even close to ready for the NFL. Hoyer should have been given the support and reps from the coaching staff. He may not be a perfect choice, but he’s the only one the Browns have. I believe the Browns will be forced to use the #1 pick from Buffalo to pick a QB again in 2015.

  103. nyneal says: Aug 20, 2014 1:58 AM

    Manziel, Manziel, Manziel, Manziel, Manziel, Manziel, Manziel, Manziel, Manziel, Manziel.

    Is anyone else as sick as I am of hearing this guy’s name?

    I thought Tim Tebow’s coverage was overboard — but this kid’s is even worse!

    I’d rather read about Michael Sam than this kid! At least Sam seems to be a humble man.
    This kid is so arrogant, he should be in professional wrestling instead of the NFL!
    They could bill him as Johnny The Nose!!

  104. eventhorizon04 says: Aug 20, 2014 1:59 AM

    So basically, the head coach and offensive coordinator have strongly hinted they prefer low-key players who are easily coachable. That’s the type of QB they want, workmanlike and nondescript.

    I don’t know how you can look at that statement and fail to conclude that the Browns front office was pressured into drafting Johnny Manziel by the owner. Manziel has a lot of strengths, but being “low key” and “easily coachable” aren’t 2 of them. In college, he became famous very quickly, and he didn’t always show good discipline either on the field or off of it.

    Frankly, it’s unfair to both Manziel and the coach for them to be in this situation. Each coach should be able to choose the QB he wants to bet his career on.

  105. pmars64 says: Aug 20, 2014 2:02 AM

    As a Browns fan, it’s easy to criticize how they’ve handled this. Maybe they should have installed Manziel as the starter. But could you really do that after the off-season he had, particularly with a rolled up bill in a bathroom? Clearly, this kid has a lot to learn and would he push himself that hard if given the job? He already has the reputation for being spoiled and entitled. Handing him the job only makes that worse. And how would have this sat with the lockerroom? Not good for sure. Finally, Shanahan saw first hand in DC how a star QB can quickly gain more power than the coaches by using the media and cozying up to ownership. RGIII got too big too fast. Maybe Daddy Shanahan didn’t do a great job, but RGIII’s rapid rise to power certainly undercut him.

    What should the Browns do? Who knows? I’d throw Hoyer out there or Grossman for a few more weeks before putting in Manziel. After they go 0-3, they’ll have the bye, and then Manziel should start the rest of the season so the Browns can see if he really is their future. Otherwise, with a likely top 10 or even top 5 pick, they can try again with another QB.

  106. nyneal says: Aug 20, 2014 2:02 AM

    I mean, imagine you’re a starting veteran linebacker in the NFL who’s making a median wage compared to other NFL linebackers. You’ve been hearing constant talk about Manziel, who has done exactly nothing in the NFL.
    Now you’re playing against him. You can’t tell me you won’t have just a little more desire to put this snotty kid on his butt.
    I for one, can’t wait to see it happen. And I hope it happens often. This kid needs to be taken down a whole bunch of pegs. I hope the Steelers get their chance on opening day.

  107. coachbeck says: Aug 20, 2014 2:11 AM

    When will everyone figure out that this organization has no clue. No matter the owner. No matter the GM.

    They are always rebuilding. Their best player is a drug addict. And they are always more interested in making a splash rather than just getting better.

    Btw browns fans. Farmer is clueless as well. He put this team in a mess this season. Trying to prove he is the smartest man in the draft.

  108. avenueoffreedom says: Aug 20, 2014 2:15 AM

    This win now mentality is a mistake. They lost a leader on defense to FA, and Gordon likely won’t be around the entire season. And yet Pettine will be fired after the season and it starts all over again. To all you Browns fans, you can start boycotting games now. No one would blame you.

  109. can139 says: Aug 20, 2014 2:28 AM

    more like the Browns should have named Manziel a second stringer for the season, just like the Jags did with Bortles. Haslam is really a bad business owner.

  110. billybone says: Aug 20, 2014 2:30 AM

    Why would Cleveland hope Hoyer doesn’t play well as you mentioned? It’s not based on who is the most popular if the true goal is to win. If Hoyer is winning them games, then JF can be backup or kicked to the curb if the circus gets too big with him on the team. Haven’t we learned anything from the Tebow situation?

    Just because someone was a first round pick or paid a lot in free agency shouldn’t mean they are crowned the starter. Google Matt Flynn Russell Wilson as a prime example.

  111. number1hawkfan says: Aug 20, 2014 2:33 AM

    Yeah all the football “experts” that appeared on Seattle sports radio 2 years ago we’re ripping the Seahawks for letting Matt Flynn and Russell Wilson compete thru 3 preseason games splitting reps. They said that whoever becomes the starter is not gonna be ready cuz he’s not getting all the reps and the team is divided. Until it doesn’t work, it still might work. The 49ers look terrible right now. Does that mean there gonna suck this year? I hope so but until it happens that’s all it is. How bout letting the browns do what they’re gonna do and then we’ll see if they made the right decision.

  112. turbo2728 says: Aug 20, 2014 2:50 AM

    You saw the Washington game, right? No way is he ready to start.

  113. wryly1 says: Aug 20, 2014 2:56 AM

    Baloney. Manziel is far from ready to start for any NFL team. He doesn’t yet know how to play from under center. He doesn’t yet know how to take a 5 or 7 step drop, set up in the pocket, read the coverage thru progressions, set his feet and deliver the ball into tight windows. He doesn’t even know how to use the left side of the field unless he happens to scramble to that side.

    As for Browns offense, he is so limited at this stage, he can’t even call, let alone execute, even half the playbook. The worst thing Browns could do for this kid ( and themselves) at this point, would be throwing him out there to get pummeled.

    Browns first three opponents are the formidable defenses of Steelers, Ravens and Saints – not Duke.

  114. ceehawkfan says: Aug 20, 2014 2:58 AM

    How can you compare RGIII w/ Manziel? RGIII will succeed and Manziel will BUST!!

  115. bostonfrogs says: Aug 20, 2014 3:03 AM

    The Browns haven’t fully recovered from cutting Bernie Kosar yet, so expecting them to move past the Anderson versus Quinn fiasco may be expecting a bit much.

  116. mark4steelers says: Aug 20, 2014 3:08 AM

    Manziel is going to be a complete failure. He’s a chump, and as a Steelers Fan…I am overjoyed the Browns wasted their pic on him!

  117. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 20, 2014 3:17 AM

    Totally agree. Browns arent the laughing stock for no reason. This is why.

    And to make things worse the idiot moron Pettine still wants to go with Hoyer who absolutely blows. People are finally seeing why hes been a career backup.

    That quote above from Pettine says it all. This guy is a rock head. Only the Browns do the same dumb things every year and wonder why they dont improve, and lose 10+ games every year.

    Craxy thing is Dick LeBeau knows who he better QB is, yet his own coach cant figure it out. Dick LeBeau says he was preparing for Manziel to be the starter week 1. Too bad his dumb coach is going with Hoyer.

    You could tell the Browns who the next Pro Bowler would be, and they would take someone else to prove how “smart” they are, i.e. passing on Sammy Watkins, and taking zJustin Gilbert, who was absolutely pathetic the other night. Why? Because Pettine wanted to go defense and thinks you can win without a #1 WR. Now the idiot has no WRs.

  118. ndy79 says: Aug 20, 2014 3:19 AM

    or maybe they want to wait for the optimum time to play him, as rookie QBs can get ruined when they are thrown out there too soon.

    Not everything needs to be a massive controversy.

  119. whodat5150 says: Aug 20, 2014 3:20 AM

    I do see where you’re coming from but from a marketing standpoint you shouldn’t start Johnny Manziel from day one. Because you have to keep the interest and hopes of the Browns fans (and football fans wanting to see Manziel in regular season games) alive, al long as possible. If you start him from day one and he struggles (which he PROBABLY will being a rookie), what do the fans have to look forward to with the Browns? If you start B. Hoyer and he plays well, you keep fans motivated in anticipation of Manziel being the future. If you start Hoyer and he struggles for a few week, the fans will be looking forward to the POTENTIAL that Manziel breathing new life into the team.

  120. kappy32 says: Aug 20, 2014 3:28 AM

    I think the way they handled it also has something to do with Hoyer. To me, Hoyer comes off as a bit of a jerk with entitlement issues. He hasn’t shown a thing yet in his career, yet he is going to declare the Browns “my team” and publicly criticize certain things Manziel does. I think the Browns were worried that had they not given Hoyer a “fair” shot to win the job, they will have a disgruntled back-up who could cause a divide in the locker room. Additionally, the way Manziel plays it is only a matter of time before he gets hurt & misses a game or two & they are going to need Hoyer at some point this year. They can’t afford to have a disgruntled, disenfranchised entitlement case on their hands when they’re forced to call his number. Think I’m wrong? Just wait for the trade demand once Manziel is named the starter.

  121. 4thandlonger says: Aug 20, 2014 3:49 AM

    Seattle had an open competition that Wilson won on merits that worked pretty well.

    The 49ers went with Smith until Kap got his chance and that turned out nicely.

    The Eagles started Michael Vick last year over Foles.

    Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady started as back ups.

    Cleveland have the leagues worst receivers. Not much of a running game. And a defense that might be good but not great enough to win games purely on defense.

    No one has an issue with Bortles and Bridgewater being made to wait behind questionable QBs. I don’t understand this logic that says because Manziel is a celebrity he has to start?

  122. godeepwvu says: Aug 20, 2014 3:51 AM

    Manziel clearly isn’t ready (probably never will be), but the FO hand will ultimately be forced by the fans. Wasted draft pick.

  123. bohste says: Aug 20, 2014 3:57 AM

    Brady Quinn reported to training camp late, thus, he was not able to catch up to Derek Anderson by the start of the 2007 season. That’s not even a good comparison to the Johnny Football case.

  124. tunescribe says: Aug 20, 2014 4:07 AM

    Manziel is poison — to whatever team would’ve drafted him.

  125. crazyfootballfun says: Aug 20, 2014 4:24 AM

    maybe they didn’t want an immature brat as their starting QB, and hoped a little humility would help him grow up.

  126. araidersfan says: Aug 20, 2014 4:31 AM

    The Browns should never have drafted this loser in the first place. I’m sure that there’s 30 other teams that are relieved that they didn’t although Jerry Jones still has regrets (LOL). Maybe Cleveland can still cut their loss and unload him to the Cowboys.

  127. erock0129 says: Aug 20, 2014 5:05 AM

    Well….yeah. They probably shoulda named SOMEONE to be the starter. I think that’s why everything’s jacked up with their timing. I see a case for Hoyer starting as well, but ya gotta name one and give them the reps….go Browns.
    #have faith!!

  128. natelan says: Aug 20, 2014 5:25 AM

    What a horrendously stupid draft decision by the Browns.

    I like the Browns, I want them to succeed, they have the BEST fans in football (to support their garbage team that well for so long proves it to be true), but the front office is just constantly making the most idiotic decisions. And each time they do something stupid, it sets the team back 5 years, and then they wash, rinse and repeat.

  129. olcap says: Aug 20, 2014 5:28 AM

    This article makes no sense.

    Would you install Johnny as the starter now, after that less than stellar performance on Monday? And I’m not talking about the bird flip.

    Can you imagine how much more obnoxious Johnny would have been all this time since the draft, had they said right out of the gate, “Johnny’s the starting QB of the Browns”?

    And you’re whining about neither of them getting prepared. Part of the preparation for a rookie QB is to work under the tutelage of a more experienced QB. Yes, Johnny works with the second team, but he works with the first team too. I think it’s pretty clear by example that naming a rookie QB the starter as soon as he’s drafted doesn’t work out all that well.

    There seems to be a sentiment being gently stroked here lately, with the pushes for rule changes that don’t need to be made, and basically echoing RG’s destructive “advances” in the league. Now this, an attack on solid planning and development of a rookie player, and what seems to be a push to speed this process up so more headlines can be created.

  130. vaughnjoe says: Aug 20, 2014 5:42 AM

    Nah…

  131. patriottony says: Aug 20, 2014 5:47 AM

    “When people criticize how we handled it, what’s the alternative?” Pettine told USA Today at the time.

    HOW ABOUT YOU NOT DRAFT THE JERK? Does character and maturity matter one damn bit? Meanwhile two QB’s drafted AFTER HIM, look like the real deal don’t they? Jimmy G in NE looks like he could just step right into brady’s cleats,,,no problem and where was he drafted,,,oh thats right bottom of the second..30 odd players AFTER,,manziel the mouth…just three days ago,,how did he carry himself…come on we know the answer,,the kid is a JERK, plain and simple..

  132. odie02 says: Aug 20, 2014 5:55 AM

    I am not a Browns fan but, I for one hope that Manziel can at least live up to half of the hype that the MEDIA has created for him. I am not defending him, but “the finger” incident is just immaturity. Let’s see some articles about Brady throwing a temper tantrum or P. Manning pointing and yelling at his WR’s. There is no doubt Manziel has the passion; it just needs to be focused. And until he can somehow escape this spotlight I am not sure he can focus…..

  133. stigman2012 says: Aug 20, 2014 6:04 AM

    Browns should not have drafted Manziel on Day One.

    –Fixed it for ya.

  134. mistrezzrachael says: Aug 20, 2014 6:08 AM

    RG3..a superstar????? Be serious, he is the 2nd best QB on his team. Washington Natives may never win with him.

    Too early on Manziel, but right now…he is behind many other ROOKIE qb’s never mind veterans….He is not ready to play…and who knows, he may never be ready.

  135. madelf68 says: Aug 20, 2014 6:19 AM

    Straw man, straw man I was only joking when I said I’d like to smash every tooth in your head.

    And now I know how Joan of Arc felt.

  136. pdmjr says: Aug 20, 2014 6:25 AM

    It’s not like Hoyer is a star, he’s a journeyman and won’t get any better. Of course RGIII is likeable and Johnny Football is not

  137. tommy57 says: Aug 20, 2014 6:26 AM

    Doesn’t matter. Steelers will pummel him in game 1.

  138. bucrightoff says: Aug 20, 2014 6:27 AM

    Manziel will be a hell of a QB….in Saskatchewan.

  139. uglydingo says: Aug 20, 2014 6:38 AM

    Why should Manziel have been the starter from day one when he is obviously struggling for throwing accuracy? Did you even watch the Redskins game? His ability to attract media attention can’t hide the inaccuracy of some of his throws. Sorry Johnny, you can’t just throw it up and rely on Mike Evans’ height and strength to grab the ball like you did as an Aggie.

  140. dawgturd says: Aug 20, 2014 6:40 AM

    Let me guess, if an elderly we’re to fall on the ground, you’d be the person who would walk over to him/her and give em a few swift kicks to their ribs….

  141. djstat says: Aug 20, 2014 6:42 AM

    Had “Johnny selfish” committed to being a QB and not being a celebrity he would have made it easier for the Browns to name him the starter. #sameoldbrowns #johnnyselfish

  142. realityonetwo says: Aug 20, 2014 6:51 AM

    Sorry, but the Redskins game exposed both QBs as substandard, no matter how much practice they have.

  143. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 20, 2014 6:54 AM

    Hoyer 8 for 20 for 108 yards. Just the type of stats you want out of your starting QB. 40% completion percentage.

    He’s your boy Pettine. Hope this decision gets you fired. It should.

    And for all the idiot Browns fans that want a nice guy as their QB? You got him. Just be prepared for 40 percent completion percentage and a 14 loss season.

  144. bunjy96 says: Aug 20, 2014 7:02 AM

    RG3 and the diva are not put together the same way.

    Browns are doing it right.

  145. ausernamethatisavailable says: Aug 20, 2014 7:05 AM

    Could not disagree more. Starting any player just bc you picked him in the first round is silly, much less the most important position on the field.

  146. joemammy says: Aug 20, 2014 7:06 AM

    Yeah…because the Browns starting a rookie quarterback has worked so well…

  147. 89bottomline says: Aug 20, 2014 7:11 AM

    Brady Quinn’s lack of ability made him hard to use. Not Derek Anderson starting.

  148. handsofsteelhartofstone says: Aug 20, 2014 7:14 AM

    It doesn’t matter. They are not a good football team.

  149. metspeed21 says: Aug 20, 2014 7:17 AM

    Splitting reps the way they did on Monday night was a disaster. I liked what Pettine was doing up to that point, but that decision was a huge step backwards in his early coaching career. It was pure idiocy. The offense had zero chance to get into a rhythm. Jumbled, sloppy, unwatchable mess. Looked forward all weekend to that debacle.

    That was a putrid display on Monday night. Pettine and Shan have to get their act together. Name Hoyer the starter and be done with it already.

  150. root4cleveland says: Aug 20, 2014 7:25 AM

    The Browns traded up from 26 to 22 to get Manziel: fair enough. But they also passed on Johnny at 4 and again at 9. My guess is the Browns considered there to be a less than 50% chance Manziel would “wreck the league” but a big enough chance – say 30% – that it was worth taking a shot, but not before ensuring they have the assets next year to possibly get that best QB.

    There was no clear-cut best QB in this draft. (And there still isn’t, btw.) I still like the draft. I still like how the Browns have handled the QB situation. And unlike the media darlings I’m fine if Manziel sits a year behind a veteran starter, even if that starter isn’t a top-15 QB.

  151. fleaman1381 says: Aug 20, 2014 7:27 AM

    I feel like the Browns handled this poorly. Manziel will not be the week one starter, or at least shouldn’t be since even he is saying he’s not ready to play the Steelers. Trying to humble this kid by making him fail a “competition” is just hurting the rest of the team. Seeing the way the team just seemed to be going through the motions on Monday night makes me think they are getting tired of it too. Just put the kid on the bench for a year and let him adjust to the NFL. Maybe throw him in there during garbage time. The kids a celebrity and there really isn’t much you can do about that, and Cleveland SHOULD have realized that when they drafted him.

  152. wellthatsinteresting says: Aug 20, 2014 7:29 AM

    I disagree. Manziel’s attitude and immaturity have made this a genuine QB competition. The Coaches just wanted him to ‘earn’ his spot. From what I saw vs. Washington, it won’t matter who starts as the O-Line is not pass blocking effectively and the WR’s can’t catch a ball unless it’s ‘perfectly’ thrown. Manziel ‘flipped’ himself to 2nd string QB in the 3rd Quarter, and may have ‘flipped’ himself to an eventual luxury suite at University Hospitals. Upsetting opposing defenses is NOT a good idea in the NFL, Little Johnny.

  153. bill3334 says: Aug 20, 2014 7:31 AM

    So they were just supposed to hand over the job to an immature brat? He has done nothing to show the he deserves to be the #1 QB.

  154. logicalvoicesinmyhead says: Aug 20, 2014 7:34 AM

    An exercise in sophistry.

  155. youreinthejunglebaby says: Aug 20, 2014 7:41 AM

    The alternative would’ve been to not waste a 1st round pick on someone with countless red flags. Every idiot knows the QB talent is in next year’s draft. Enjoy your celebrity status in the basement of the AFC, Clowns.

  156. exboomer says: Aug 20, 2014 7:49 AM

    I think Pettine is doing the right thing and I hope he continues to ignore the media “experts” who are whining about it. Manziel needs to earn the job, not have it handed to him. Especially since he has shown is doesn’t deserve to be the starter right now.

  157. atthemurph says: Aug 20, 2014 7:50 AM

    Cleveland is doing it right. A player still has to win the job with his play or the coaches will lose the rest of the team.

    Each position should be run as a meritocracy. You got to earn it.

  158. Indybear says: Aug 20, 2014 7:50 AM

    No they shouldn’t have.

  159. boomboombrown says: Aug 20, 2014 7:56 AM

    So Johnny was just showing the Washington sideline what position he should be in on the depth chart.

  160. buffaloisadumpsterandtheirfansaremorons says: Aug 20, 2014 8:06 AM

    Pettine is in way over his head. All you need to do is watch his press conferences to realize he is a coordinator playing the part of head coach.

    They panic hired him and it’s already looking bad.

  161. richie078 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:12 AM

    Although I’ve never seen this tried, what about…

    Starting Hoyer, but then giving Manziel one (1) series per game in the 2nd quarter of each game, with scripted plays?

    This would provide actual game experience for the young rookie, without forcing him into full time duty.

  162. bartpkelly says: Aug 20, 2014 8:13 AM

    Hoyer deserved the right to compete and the Browns had to see what they had in Hoyer.

  163. stoutfiles says: Aug 20, 2014 8:18 AM

    ” they may have to go with an equally unprepared Brian Hoyer and hope he doesn’t play so well”

    Um, I’m pretty sure that if Hoyer is winning games and getting them to the playoffs that nobody will complain (except for ESPN).

  164. rugbyisbetter says: Aug 20, 2014 8:20 AM

    Whether or not Manziel becomes a successful quarterback in the longterm is not determined by the first few weeks of preseason… Last year in Philadelphia Vick and Foles had the same battle with Vick on top…. because they let Foles compete early on, it helped him when his card finally got called out of necessity…

    Also further negating this argument is Bortles. The Jags are TRYING to keep him as backup but he’s just playing lights out… No one really is crying a river over his development… And when they think he is ready, he will be the starter.

  165. blackdb says: Aug 20, 2014 8:20 AM

    Quit comparing him to a top 5 pick. He was a late first round pick. Amazing you don’t say the same thing in Jacksonville where the top 5 QB is not the starter and is actually playing like one. Johnny football is the latest in a long line of Cleveland busts.

  166. audient says: Aug 20, 2014 8:21 AM

    And with that, Hoyer to start.

  167. citiciti says: Aug 20, 2014 8:22 AM

    4-12 same old browns.

  168. leftyjsf says: Aug 20, 2014 8:24 AM

    Hoyer starting. We can’t have nice things in Cleveland. Hoyer clearly did not earn job this pre-season.

  169. golions1 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:24 AM

    Just a thought here, maybe the Browns used a QB competition to see who can play better.

  170. titusyoungslegalcounsel says: Aug 20, 2014 8:29 AM

    The title should read “Cleveland should have never drafted Manziel”

  171. denverdude7 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:33 AM

    The Browns never should have listened to the homeless guy and let Manziel become someone elses headache.

    Taking Sammy Watkins and adding depth at another position was the way to build this team the right way.

    Either way, this team was destined for another 5 win season with or without Manziel which would have allowed them to choose a franchise quarterback from a much deeper talent pool in 2015.

    The receiving trio of Gordon, Watkins and Jordan would have ranked in the top 5 in the NFL and made life so much better for a rookie quarterback in 2015.

    Go ahead… tell me how wrong I am.

  172. aa1829 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:34 AM

    There are some teams in sports that are just plain snake-bit. Perhaps karma is real, but whatever the Browns did to deserve swinging and missing on a QB for years on end, it must have been epic. We feel ya Browns fans, hang in there.

  173. TheDPR says: Aug 20, 2014 8:34 AM

    I still don’t understand why the media assumes this guy is destined to be a starter in his first year.

    Sure, they moved up to pick him, but into the 20s, not into the top ten or something. And anyone who knows football knows he’s not that good a quarterback yet, so why would they force him onto the field? This isn’t the 1990s where your first round pick just got paid $40 million or something. With the rookie cap there is no fiscal reason to put him on the field yet and with his performance there is clearly no football reason to put him out there either.

  174. kwjsb says: Aug 20, 2014 8:37 AM

    The biggest mistake the Browns seem to make year in and year out is the QB competition. The eventual starter never seems to get enough reps to be prepared since every other year they have to learn a new system.

    I would have named Hoyer the starter to be prepared for day 1. Since the Browns have not used less than 3 QB’s a year since Tim “Ouch” in ’96, Manziel would have gotten his chance if Hoyer failed or got injured

  175. lbcoach34 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:39 AM

    Hindsight is perfect 20/20

  176. mlmike40 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:39 AM

    This is a terrible take. Hoyer did enough last year to at least warrant a look with the starting team. He played well last year before he got hurt.

    The Browns did the right thing by making it an open competition for the QB spot, but they handled the competition poorly almost the entire way through. Manziel should rot on the bench until Hoyer gets hurt or plays himself out of the job b/c he’s immature and just does not get it.

  177. fwippel says: Aug 20, 2014 8:42 AM

    I think this analysis is dead wrong. Manziel isn’t ready to be the starter, and the job of the head coach is to put the best players on the field that will help him win football games.

    Hoyer is very likely to play himself out of the starter’s at some point during the season, and when that happens, Manziel will have the opportunity to prove himself. If Manziel had spent more time in the off-season learning the playbook instead of hanging out in the limelight, maybe his production to this point would have convinced the Browns coaches to hand him the starter’s role. He hasn’t earned it yet.

  178. gjn804 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:46 AM

    Hoyer deserves a shot. The Browns cant play the QB carousel though. Pick a guy and stick with him. Its very clear Manziel needs to learn an mature.

  179. wiitrainingcamp says: Aug 20, 2014 8:47 AM

    It’s ok to draft a QB and let him develop and mature if he isn’t ready from day one. In fact, it was the norm just a few years ago. Simply getting selected in the first round doesn’t magically make you ready to be a starting NFL QB. You might be ready, but there is no way to truly know for sure until you put him out there in front of NFL competition.

    To me, the “Manziel must start” viewpoint comes from the media wanting him to start because he drives more traffic and creates more content than Hoyer. Otherwise, why wouldn’t we be getting posts like this one about Bortles and Bridgewater?

  180. adantsa says: Aug 20, 2014 8:53 AM

    This coaching staff is not the right one for Manziel. They dont want him, their offense won’t be built around him. I’m sure he holds some of the blame but they should have known what they got when they drafted him. I don’t see this ending well.

  181. sbmcintosh36 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:57 AM

    So now that Pettine has named Hoyer the week 1 starter (because right now he is the better QB) do you retract this claim ?
    Pettine says it perfectly when said do we name Manziel starter right after they picked him?
    The competition was real and Hoyer won, big deal Manziel needs to work harder put his finger back in his pocket shut his mouth and practice.

  182. learysdisciples says: Aug 20, 2014 8:58 AM

    Dumb

  183. d10ballfan says: Aug 20, 2014 9:01 AM

    Agree with other posters — this take is off base. If anything, the Browns should have named Hoyer the starter after being released to participate at camp. Then give him 100% of the reps.

    The DA Quinn comparison is off base. The last thing the Browns want is for Hoyer to stink. They want/need to win or be competitive. Hoyer proved he can lead the team successfully.

    Hoyer is a FA at year end. If he is the man then they re-sign him. If not, it goes to Johnny Football. If handled correctly it can work out just fine. Now only if the national media would actually pay attn to what is happening in Cleveland they would understand. Yet they are still mad the Browns banned them earlier this summer.

  184. indians4evr says: Aug 20, 2014 9:03 AM

    Whether the Browns win with Hoyer, or lose with Manziel, or which ever. Haslam, Farmer and Pettine from a business stand point are the clear winners here. Since May and till now the national media has been about the Cleveland Browns and Cleveland and not just from the sports media.

    The numbers financially this summer in the end will not lie. The Browns won on 2014 draft.

    Now, the team win/loss record?

  185. davisacross says: Aug 20, 2014 9:06 AM

    From Haslam using a homeless person as some kind of Magic 8 ball – “All signs point to yes” – when deciding whether to draft Manziel, to how they managed Manziel since the draft, the Browns have shown they lack a compass. When trying to cover every scenario, they cover none. The very thing they wanted to avoid, is the very thing they manufactured. This is a mess.

  186. erikinhell says: Aug 20, 2014 9:08 AM

    Most rookie QBs should sit their first year. Very few of them are ready for the speed and defenses of the NFL game. Most rookie QBs in the NFL are bolstered by good running games, like Rothliswhosit. The only rookie QB that was 100% ready to go in the last 20 years is Peyton Manning.

  187. droppingthemike says: Aug 20, 2014 9:09 AM

    Johnny Manziel was a marginal talent with a slim chance of making it as an NFL quarterback even before the character issues. He lacks the measurables. He lacks the arm strength. He lacks the speed of an RGIII, who is getting the snot knocked out of him, and the drop-back passing ability of a Drew Brees, who is undersized but makes up for it in every other measurable. He lacks the heart and the selflessness of a Doug Flutie. People need to stop acting like Manziel is an NFL quarterback. He has nothing that says he is one. Nothing. Wasted draft selection.

  188. pftjunkie says: Aug 20, 2014 9:21 AM

    “Browns should have made Manziel the starter from Day One”
    *** Seriously!?!?!? Have you been borrowing rolled up dollars from Manziel?

  189. stigman2012 says: Aug 20, 2014 9:22 AM

    This situation isn’t about who earned the starting gig…it is about who earned the ben ch.

  190. ballboy48 says: Aug 20, 2014 9:27 AM

    What do the Browns really have to lose? If Hoyer plays well this year, Manziel becomes trade bait, and the Browns get more picks.

  191. bastyboy says: Aug 20, 2014 9:28 AM

    I don’t understand the argumentation here.

    “And Griffin, who instantly rose to superstardom in D.C., ended up being not quite as coachable as former offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan may have wanted.”

    How in the world naming him starter from day 1 would be a good idea? Johnny is by far a bigger head case than Griffin.

  192. justintuckrule says: Aug 20, 2014 9:28 AM

    You guys are all fools if you don’t think haslam hasn’t already mandated that his cash cow must start. You’re also fools if you don’t think espn, the nfl and other networks don’t have a say. Who’s hoyer? Manziel will start week 1. Book it.

  193. jimmypx says: Aug 20, 2014 9:29 AM

    It would have been better for the Browns to do with Johhny Football what the Jags are doing with Bortles and have him sit a year and learn as well as take the pressure off him. Then he’ll be ready to start next year.

  194. Fried Toast says: Aug 20, 2014 9:32 AM

    >”Browns should have made Manziel the starter from Day One”

    That’s the most ridiculous title I may have read on this site. Especially now that we’ve got tape from 2 different games- does he really seem that ready to snatch the starting job in Cleveland? Chalk it up to me only being a fan of the game, but I don’t see anything from his game tape or from the points above that makes me think Manziel is (or should have been) a clear starter.

    My faith in in Pettine. I think he’s doing it right so far.

  195. mogogo1 says: Aug 20, 2014 9:36 AM

    Naming starters without any competition has many drawbacks. And doing that with a kid like Johnny Manziel who seems to have real entitlement issues to begin with would likely have proven disastrous.

    In the midst of trying to win the job he already was going out for beers during camp, downplaying bad practices saying he’s better in games, and flipping off opposing players during preseason games. Can you imagine what he’d have been doing if he was confident that he already had the job?

  196. coachgutz says: Aug 20, 2014 9:37 AM

    So, an NFL franchise should name their starting QB based on the media’s wants/needs.

  197. miguelcairo says: Aug 20, 2014 9:38 AM

    What do the Browns have to lose? They should’ve gone all in with Manziel.

  198. christophershearin says: Aug 20, 2014 9:52 AM

    i am a huge browns fan, and I knew the team would bungle this situation from the get-go. This is just how the factory of sadness works

  199. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 20, 2014 9:52 AM

    Lol typical Browns and Browns fans. And when the Browns go 2-14 with choir boy Hoyer as QB, I Will laugh at you and I would expect the Browns to fire their moron head coach Mike Pettine. This guy is not a head coach.

    He’s a liar just like Haslam. This wasn’t a competition this was a dog and pony show. Hoyer is the guy he wanted all along.

    All you Browns fans that can’t handle egos is the same reason the Browns suck every year. You deserve Hoyer. I’m gonna sit back and laugh when they Browns get blown out the first 3 games

  200. starfan79 says: Aug 20, 2014 9:54 AM

    The Jones Clan was smart not to take him.. As a Cowboy fan it would have been fun to watch him but I am sooooooo happy we drafted a guard. If Jason Garret is fired as the head coach I would still want him in the draft room.. 3 offensive lineman in 4 years… Sean Lee in the second round, Terrance Williams and Demarco Murray in the 3rd.. The only major fail was Claiborne.. Everyone gets a first round bust every now and again. Next year will start the run of defensive players… There isnt much more need on offense with the exception of some depth at WR.. Defense needs to be hit hard next year.. and if they have a high first rounder.. I am good taking a QB in the first round as long as it isnt Winston. Has bust written all over him.

  201. joefelicelli says: Aug 20, 2014 9:57 AM

    I liken it to Rex Grossman when he was drafted by the Bears. Spent his time in a Spurrier offense in college, and didn’t learn how to read defenses, just make one read and go. He had a strong arm, was exciting to the people of Chicago, and was put in as the starter way ahead of when he should have been. A couple of injuries, some immaturity, and “Bad Rex” was making more appearances than any other version of the player.

    You look at him now, and he is what he should have been all along. A decent backup who can play if you need him, but you can’t expect him to be a long-term starter.
    Manziel may end up just like that, but right now, he is not prepared for the NFL game. No field vision, inconsistent mechanics, and processes information way too slowly. Hoyer is not a great QB, but Manziel is not even a QB yet. He needs to stop being the highlight reel in his own head, and start watching film instead of making it. If he dedicates himself to his craft, he has the physical ability to get the job done. Pro Bowler? Not likely, but he could be a decent to good starter given time and good coaching. But he has to want to do those things, and I don’t see that in his actions.

  202. crindal3000 says: Aug 20, 2014 9:59 AM

    the browns shouldn’t drafted him in the first place; the dude is a train wreck. Tebow 2 without the work ethic.

  203. godeepwvu says: Aug 20, 2014 10:03 AM

    Johnny Manziel = Danica Patrick

    Limited skills, but sells tickets.

  204. DonRSD says: Aug 20, 2014 10:06 AM

    Dolphins = worst ran franchise in the NFL.
    Browns are a close 2nd.

  205. urbusted2 says: Aug 20, 2014 10:09 AM

    A preseason game doesn’t expose anything but rust. Weeden looked good in the 2013 preseason and we all know how he looked in the regular season.

  206. austindudero says: Aug 20, 2014 10:31 AM

    Wrong! They should’ve named Hoyer the starter from day 1. It’s obvious that Manziel is the future QB in Cleveland. Equally obvious that he’s no where near ready. Did you see all those sailing balls, jittery feet, and meltdown of poise… in just 2 pre-season games?

    Week 5 (after the bye) is the next “re-evaluation point”. If he’s ready then, and Hoyer hasn’t dazzled, then consider starting him. If he’s still not ready, then wait to the next “re-evaluation point”. Oh yeah, you don’t need to make any of this public either.

    Pssst… BTW, this is exactly what the Jags are doing. Let’s compare notes at the end of the season and see which QB has been better developed. My $ is on the Jag’s approach.

  207. bengalboy99 says: Aug 20, 2014 10:32 AM

    What’s the big deal about this guy? He’s making a rep for himself through his performance in college & this “Johnny Football” persona that doesn’t work once you leave the campus. He belongs on the bench, never should have been drafted in the first round

  208. patsfan1820 says: Aug 20, 2014 10:33 AM

    All I heard was why won’t the Browns start Johnny Manziel? The answer can be broken down into three different parts. First of all he’s a rookie why throw him into the fire and set himself up for an epic failure of a rookie season. Second, he doesn’t know how to keep his emotions in check (see Monday night). Finally, he isn’t accurate at all and doesn’t play anything like a real NFL QB. Sorry but in my opinion he’s terrible even Connor Shaw would be a better choice to start than him.

  209. tory707 says: Aug 20, 2014 10:52 AM

    So sick of hearing about this kid. He has not done a thing yet.

  210. kevo95 says: Aug 20, 2014 11:23 AM

    Johnny is a joke

  211. dkalev says: Aug 20, 2014 11:49 AM

    I agree… Rookie qbs should sit a year… Heck, they’re not making top dollar anyways, learn the game! Steve young had joe Montana (1 SB), Aaron Rogers had Brett Favre (1 SB), Eli manning had Kurt Warner (2 SB)… even Tom Brady had Drew Bledsoe (granted, bledsoe isn’t exactly favre Montana or Warner) (3 SB)… The key is to draft a good qb while you have a good qb to groom and raise him, and it won’t mean much given how qbs last well into their 30s and don’t make bank till their fourth year anyways…

  212. mark4steelers says: Aug 20, 2014 11:56 AM

    Manziel is going to be a complete failure and another bad decision by the Browns. As a Steeler fan, I must say I am overjoyed the Browns wasted a 1st round pick on this chump!!

  213. kiteridler says: Aug 20, 2014 12:02 PM

    The Browns are who we thought they were.

  214. td40 says: Aug 20, 2014 12:12 PM

    I don’t get why people, out of nowhere, seem to feel that, if you draft a QB in the first round, you HAVE to start him. What happened to the whole “give them a year or two on the bench to learn” philosophy? How old is Manziel… 22? What, he’s gonna be past his prime and unable to play when he’s 23 or 24? Relax, already. Yeesh.

  215. belichickluvsu says: Aug 20, 2014 12:25 PM

    To bad the owner forced this pick. Manziel is a child. Would rather be a celebrity than a QB. If the guy cannot earn it he doesn’t deserve it.

  216. In Teddy We Trust says: Aug 20, 2014 12:33 PM

    So the Browns’ problem is that they had a quarterback controversy between Derek Anderson and Brady Quinn in 2008? Wasn’t the problem that both quarterbacks were terrible? How would starting Brady Quinn in 2007 make everything better?

  217. PokeSalad says: Aug 20, 2014 12:48 PM

    Making Hoyer the starter is a grave error by the Browns. JF is clearly the better QB with a stratospheric upside…Hoyer has already peaked.

    This can only retard JF’s development, hurt the Browns on the field, and discourage the Browns’ fanbase, which had been reinvigorated by the drafting of JF.

    Very poor decision. This will haunt the Browns and their fans for a long, long time.

  218. samoanjungle says: Aug 20, 2014 1:00 PM

    I’m just shocked anyone would even consider drafting this guy in the first round. He had trouble written all over him.
    When a person with issues suddenly becomes rich it rarely turns out well.
    If he were still sitting there in the 5th or 6th round, I would have taken him to sit on the bench for at least a year or two while hopefully he grows up and learns the system.

  219. mdippong26 says: Aug 20, 2014 1:03 PM

    They should have made Hoyer the starter from the beginning instead of listening to the media and giving Manziel too much of a shot.

  220. steelcurtainn says: Aug 20, 2014 2:37 PM

    Doesn’t matter who the clowns play in week one. Both these guys are bust. 31-3 Steelers.

  221. dudeicle says: Aug 20, 2014 2:43 PM

    look… they’re gonna get clobbered first 3 games no matter what. Might as well let Hoyer take the fall, then let golden boy make an entrance against softer opposition

  222. askod1 says: Aug 21, 2014 11:03 AM

    First of all Manziel is NO RGIII ok. Griffin would smoke Johnny in a fort race and he can also throw way better… also, griffin is familiar with huddles…lol

  223. packerzman says: Aug 22, 2014 3:36 PM

    2 words…Connor Shaw

  224. tnfire69 says: Aug 24, 2014 1:12 AM

    I do think that the Browns mishandled this with both Hoyer & Manziel. The reason I feel this way is because they may have shut down a real progress report on both players. Why play hard when you know you are the starter or back-up already? Do I think they should have just given the job to Manziel, no way & heres why. He is a rookie & needs to learn the system. I think it can be to a rookie’s benefit to sit a year or longer. Do I think they should have just given the job to Hoyer, no way & heres why. Yes, he has game time play but not a whole lot more then Manziel or Shaw. Hoyer has been a back-up qb for most of his career except for the 4 games last year. It should have been an open opportunity for all the qbs including Vince Young. They didn’t even give Young a real shot but that’s another post. I think they may have blocked themselves from truly finding that out. I mean the best player should play.

    I feel the same the way about Jacksonville & Bortles.

  225. jordanjohnson78 says: Aug 26, 2014 11:29 AM

    Let’s just win a Super Bowl championship, and let them manage Manziel!! ;)

  226. beelicker says: Aug 26, 2014 2:41 PM

    If Hoyer succeeds then Jerruh Jones will still trade multiple future picks (once Romo goes down once again to catastrophic injury) for the POTENTIAL of Manziel, particularly if JM doesn’t play & dispel any notion of said POTENTIAL, right?

    If Hoyer flames out then Manziel still gets his shot & JJ can go blow his own flute & the Browns still have a capable backup into the future Hoyer …

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