The Browns didn’t bother going to Johnny Manziel’s pro day, and it didn’t really matter.
Because they’re going to get a close look at him this weekend.
According to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Manziel will be in Cleveland and work out for the Browns this weekend.
They’ve already worked out the other top quarterbacks in the class, including Blake Bortles, Teddy Bridgewater and Derek Carr, with Carr coming back for a visit next week.
The Browns might have tried to play low-key about quarterbacks, but it’s clear that’s their biggest need, and has been since the team returned there.
That’s why coach Mike Pettine’s words about Manziel sounded so enthusiastic when he spoke at the owners meetings.
“Gifted playmaker,” Pettine said. “The play starts when he makes the first guy miss. That’s exciting to watch, but to transition to the NFL, he’ll have to be able to play in structure, his fifth-step, his foot hits the ground that he can execute a throw. I don’t think there’s any reason to think that wouldn’t happen and I think he’s capable of doing it, but when you have that ability to improvise like that, that’s what makes him special and maybe separates him from other guys.”
This weekend will be important for them to get to know him, since they skipped his workout at Texas A&M, one of just two teams to do so.
The Browns have the 26th pick in addition to the fourth, so they have ammunition to move around if they decide they need to.
UPDATE 6:03 p.m. ET: Technically speaking, Manziel won’t work out while he’s in Cleveland, as the initial report said. Teams can only work out prospects on their college campuses. So he might be visiting with the Browns, but won’t be breaking a sweat there, which he might never do, come to think of it.