Manziel senses no locker-room rift over quarterback


Browns safety Donte Whitner recently made some news by admitting to the existence of a 50-50 split in the locker room regarding Brian Hoyer and Johnny Manziel at quarterback.

That was news to Manziel.

“I don’t feel any rift like that or anything going on in the locker room,” Manziel told reporters on Monday.  “As far as my end, I think they see two guys coming out playing football and competing as well as everybody else out on the field competing.  Quarterback is obviously just the position that gets a lot of flash and gets a lot of attention, but at the same time there are guys battling all around.  I don’t really know if there’s an exact split like that.  It’s not something I’m really aware of right now.  I know two guys are going out and competing, trying to move the ball down the field for this offense.”

Browns coach Mike Pettine plans to name a starter before the third preseason game.  He has yet to pick a starter for the second preseason game, coming next Monday night against Washington.  Asked whether Manziel hopes to start that game, he displayed verbal elusiveness that matches his on-field moves.

“I hope to do whatever the coaches tell me to do,” Manziel said.  “That’s what I’m going to do, whatever they say, whether it’s No. 1’s, No. 2’s, whatever it is.  I’m going to do what Coach Pettine and Coach Shanahan have in store for me.”

Presumably, Manziel and the rest of us will know what that is within the next seven days.  Not long after that, we’ll also know whether it will be Hoyer or Manziel taking the field on September 7 at Heinz Field against the Steelers.

38 responses to “Manziel senses no locker-room rift over quarterback

  1. The best rookie QB will be Teddy Bridgewater.

    And it’s not even close.

    We easily have the most improved team in the NFL.

    If you watched any of Friday’s game vs the Raiders, you would know.

    Our defense looked dominant, and our offense looked amazing.

    We will win the Super Bowl this year.


  2. Sure says all the right things, Whitner says he’s also doing all the right things. Once the “never played a sport in my life” media types stop riding his jock he may be a legitimate, successful player!

  3. Hoyer just needs to invite Johnny boy to an anonymous hotel party with some hookers, rolled up dollar bills, cocaine, and then film the whole thing and send it to TMZ.. And for good measure invite the Pouncy brothers and Josh Gordon…

    BAM, instant starter status for Hoyer…

  4. Theres a big difference between a 50/50 split on who is the best QB. and a rift in the locker room.

    This is the media trying to create drama.

  5. A couple of weeks ago, Pettine said Manziel would start game #2. So, what has changed?

    I believe Manziel did okay with his first NFL action, albeit preseason. The second-string line caved like the Iraqi Army. Manziel showed a decent arm, when he used it. When he runs, he needs to tuck that ball in tight or he will lose it. NFL defenders know how to make the ball “pop” out.

    I was hoping to see some of Connor Shaw, maybe this week.

  6. One guy breathing a sigh of relief is Brandon Weeden. He must be so happy to be out of that mess

  7. Why wouldn’t they start him against the steelers? Dick lebeau doesn’t have much success against rookie qbs. He prob would have 2 runs of 50 or more yards against that slow pitt defense . Only way he won’t dominate the steelers is if their coach sticks his foot out in front of johnny money when he is about to break one

  8. The no brainer is to go with Hoyer as the game 1 started.

    When he doesn’t win (because he plays for Cleveland) you trot Johnny out as the savior.

    When he doesn’t win (because he plays for Cleveland) the media will move on to someone new.

  9. There is so much pressure to win NOW, I cannot imagine Manziel not being named the starter, and Bridgewater in Minnesota too for that matter. What do these second-tier teams have to lose?

  10. Manziel, knows how to handle these pencil neck geek media mongrels. Every hack writer trying to bait Johnny into saying something off color, so they get a scoop etc. Fortunately, he is as poised doing interviews as he is on the field so all is good. Manziel will start on MNF against the Redskins, and then Pettine can say both he and Hoyer had fair competition playing with #1 offense. Either way the best guy to give the browns a chance to win will play in the opener. Can’t think of a better game for either to start the season off on a high note playing against the downtrodden steelers which will be an automatic win for the next few years.

  11. Johnny Manziell was drafted in the 1st round to be Cleveland’s eventual starting QB, not to hold a clipboard. It’s only a question of WHEN the Browns decide to put Manziell into the starting role, and barring the possibility of Hoyer playing extremely well…all signs are pointing towards Manziell starting for the Browns sometime very early in the season. Even if Hoyer gets the nod Week 1, I fully expect Manziell to supplant him within just a couple weeks.

    Remember how the ENTIRE Denver Broncos team responded to Tebow being put in as starter…there was clearly a renewed passion amongst his teammates and the whole team just fed off of that energy. I foresee a similar situation in Cleveland, and when Manziell is finally given the keys to the car, he’s going to rev everybody up (pun intended) into a frenzy…fans, teammates, coaches, everybody.

    *Fans have a bigger impact on the game than most people realize, and Johnny Manziell is the perfect QB to bring the fans to their feet, thus fueling his teammates to play the game with even more passion and effort.

  12. The biggest hindrance to Manziel when he finally gets his shot [it’ll definitely happen at some point this season] is Kyle Shanahan’s insistence on using him in the read option. He’s not a “running QB”, he’s just adept at improvising and keeping plays alive with his feet.

    Personal opinions aside, there’s no denying that the kid’s a ‘gamer’. It’ll be interesting to see if/how badly KS stunts his growth.

  13. thepftpoet says:
    Aug 11, 2014 3:45 PM

    The best rookie QB will be Teddy Bridgewater.

    And it’s not even close.

    We easily have the most improved team in the NFL.

    If you watched any of Friday’s game vs the Raiders, you would know.

    Our defense looked dominant, and our offense looked amazing.

    We will win the Super Bowl this year.


    Please come back and re-post at the end of December when the Vikings have 4 wins under their belt and little hands Bilgewater is out for the season!

  14. I don’t know what I hate seeing here more – Johnny Manziel stories or the Poet’s nonsense first in line. Seriously, Poet – you can be funny sometimes, but to start so many posts about how great the Vikings are and “this is the year….”? Rest it.

  15. We don’t need to wait 7 days. Manziel played like a undersized rookie. Hoyer didn’t particularly well. Play Hoyer for at least a quarter this week and Manziel longer. Unless of course, it’s a forgone conclusion that Manziel will start. Just remember, once you start Manziel, you can’t go back to Hoyer…big risk there.

  16. Keep your head up when your running into those linebackers Johnny or you’ll end up like David Wilson.

  17. Does anyone remember Doug Flutie?? I think the comparison between the two is valid, an over-performer who is under-sized for the position yet brings excitement to the game when he’s playing. I was surprised at JF’s quickness and assume that the plays he was given were intended to be safe for him, nothing downfield that takes long to develop along with blocking schemes and roll-outs to keep him safe and mobile.

    All that understood, pro linebackers and DE’s are just too quick and the CB’s hit too hard for JF to have much of a future. I expect his initiation to be ugly.

  18. The players want Hoyer. Donte Whitner was instructed by someone higher up to say that the players are split. This is all a thinly veiled effort by Browns brass to sway public opinion more toward Manziel so, when they hand Manziel the starting job he doesn’t earn, there’s less opposition and unhappiness among the teams more intelligent fans who understand (after ample evidence) that throwing a rookie QB to the wolves is a bad idea– especially when you already have a QB who has proven that he’s more than capable of winning.

  19. This whole thing is Manziel groupies vs Manziel haters with no in between (except for the poor Browns fans who are stuck listening to outsiders who could care less about their team a year ago all of a sudden pretend they know what’s best for it and that includes the media).

    Mike Pettine and the Browns organization are handling this PERFECTLY and I especially loved when Browns ownership banned the New York media from practices. Pre season doesn’t tell you how good or bad a team will be but it does tell you how individual players will do when put in different situations. Hoyer showed that his play last year wasn’t a fluke. The guy wasn’t perfect but at the same time he still got the team to the red zone repeatedly with backup Tight ends playing against defensive starters (Jordan Cameron was his favorite target last season).

    Manziel showed he isn’t Tim Tebow 2.0 and at least against backups he is a servicable QB who’s mistakes hurt himself (literally) more than the team because he’s going to move the chains one way or another. Worst case scenario is he’s RGIII 2.0 (meaning great QB but can’t stay healthy) best case scenario is Steve Young 2.0.

    You pick the guy who’s skill set compliments the team around him better. If I was the coach after Saturday I’d be leaning towards Hoyer who better utilized the players around him but I would start Manziel against the Redskins. If Manziel shows he can find the open receiver I would change my mind but if he’s still playing like he’s Denard Robinson at Michigan then he’s backup for the year and I think that’s what the Browns are going to do.

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