Pettine: Manziel struggled late in game, missed reads


Not surprisingly, Browns coach Mike Pettine declined to discuss on Friday who will be his team’s starting quarterback for its next game.

As for his evaluation of Johnny Manziel in Thursday night’s loss to the Bengals, Pettine said on a Friday morning conference call that Manziel got a high grade for his work in the first three quarters “but over the last 15 snaps, he did not play well.”

Manziel put together a solid first half but had just four completions as the Browns were shut out in the second half for the second straight game.

Pettine spoke with NFL Network while leaving the field at halftime and said Manziel needed to “calm down.”Some took that to mean Pettine was saying Manziel needed to stay in the pocket. Manziel’s touchdown pass just before halftime came on a rollout, and Manziel has long done his best work while on the run.

Asked to clarify Friday, Pettine said “by no means was saying he needed to stay in the pocket” but that there were times Manziel missed his first read.

“Part of being successful in the NFL is being able to operate from within the pocket…and then you get the best of both worlds,” Pettine said.

After Thursday night’s game, Pettine said he’d grade Manziel’s overall performance as “inconsistent.”

Pettine has maintained that Josh McCown is the team’s starter, but said Friday he won’t know how McCown’s undisclosed rib injury is still affecting him until after this weekend. With the Browns 2-7, it seems that giving Manziel more time to improve and be evaluated makes sense, so we’ll see.

The Browns play at Pittsburgh Nov. 15, then have their bye week before hosting the Ravens on Nov. 30.

44 responses to “Pettine: Manziel struggled late in game, missed reads

  1. The most dumbfounding thing from last night was how Pettine said Johnny needs to pass more from the pocket. He was making plays scrambling and rolling out so let’s have him plant his feet and try to become Tom Brady. Great idea.

  2. Key words here is missed his reads. Not sure if the Browns front office and marquis players even know how to read and write. Their performance indicates a low level of competency

  3. Seemed to me that he played well. He played to win and if that meant scrambling then so be it. The problem was his receivers were dropping a lot of balls. Also in the 4th the bengals were starting to get to him. Can’t put this one on Johnny.

  4. ” giving Manziel more time to improve and be evaluated makes sense, so we’ll see. ”
    By that logic, Since Brady and Manning might retire after this season, and Dalton might get hurt, it is time to put in Garapollo and Osweiler and McCarron in to give them “more time to improve and be evaluated”

    I disagree with that statement altogether. What is practice for? Maybe the coaches have evaluated?

  5. How many starts does he have? How much time did he get with the 1st string on a short week?

    I thought Pettine was good, but now I’m not so sure.

    Browns sure are consistent in disappointing us fans.

  6. I used to think highly of Pettine, but he had some awful halftime adjustments. He adjusted right into the Bengals hands. Manziel was incredible on the run and throws a pretty accurate pass when running. Forcing him to stay in the pocket in the second half was a huge boost to the Bengals.

    I am a Bengals fan, so I was glad to see the coaching mistake.

    I reminds me of when Vick first came into the league and everyone wanted him to be a pocket guy. Let scramblers, scramble.

  7. Really? He’s got to go into the Browns facility, with that pathetic excuse of a coach, behind a quarterback that you know isn’t going anywhere, and he’s not allowed to celebrate a touchdown drive??? Johnny hasn’t helped his own cause with his off the field issues but on the field, just scoring a touchdown I’m sure means the world to him. Especially when his own coach seems to always have something negative to say about Johnny and the fact McCown is starting, tells everyone that Pettine doesn’t even believe he’s better than McCown. Amazing that everyone can see there is no chance to win with McCown, ask Tampa, but Pettine can’t get his head around to giving the kid a chance.

  8. Manziel wasn’t the problem last night. And why on earth would you say he needs to stay in pocket more when clearly that was his only way to break the defensive coverage down. Manziel is 3 starts in let the guy play. I’ve seen a care free Manziel play(A&M) he’s probably so nervous to make a mistake you won’t get the full show of him. Make him the guy now or never you’re 2-7 and won’t catch Cincy at 8-0 and Wildxard I doubt it Raiders are handling business and so are Steelers, Jets in mix also. Make the kid your guy and let him play his game. I can promise if you think McCown is the answer at QB for future you’ll be in same situation again next season.

  9. I take it Pettine did not want to draft Johnny Football. What a dumpster fire. Wonder if Jer-ruh still wants him now? Oh wait, Weeden throws a pretty ball and Hardy is a team leader.

  10. The skill position players on Cleveland are about as bad as it gets. How many balls bounced off guys face-masks last night. How many guys created separation? Not even Lebron can win in Cleveland.

  11. Cincy made half time adjustments…Browns made none. End of story.
    I was looking for the open receiver in second half, and I didn’t see him…Cincy shut down first read, and the others were too slow to get open. By then, Johnny was sacked.
    Shame, because I saw Johnny improve by leaps and bounds over last year.

  12. This is getting to be old hat, but it seems to relate to the mentioned gap between the front office and the coaching staff of the Browns. You might wonder why they drafted Manziel in the first round, if their HC not only seems reluctant to give him a chance, but seems to almost go out of his way to criticize him at just about every turn, and complain that Manziel apparently isn’t the kind of QB that Pettine thinks he should be…never mind that they must have known what they were getting when they drafted Manziel?!
    Typical Browns organizational dysfunction. I feel sorry for their loyal fans.

  13. Pettine and the entire browns organization should be ashamed of the way they are handling Manziel. He is the same player he was in college. Why try to force him to be anything else. He is a very dynamic player and very difficult to defend as you cannot prepare against Manziel.

    He did great last night. In the second half, the line decided to stop blocking and he was sacked three times while trying to stay in the pocket per Pettines instructions. Pettine needs to be fired. Mccown never has been a heisman winner nor in Johnny’s league. He is a washed up qb that is one dimensional. Easy to prepare for and will never put any team in the playoffs. Browns are a losing team as they are only playing to be mediocre.

    it is time to either play Manziel or trade him and let him have a career somewhere that wants him.

  14. Manziel was the only highlight in a dismal performance last night. There were many passes that were dropped in the second half that would have made a huge difference. Making a scrambling QB stay in the pocket and get beat up is ridiculous. It’s obvious the O-line took some plays off last night. Some serious locker room issues. Almost rather be a Bucs fan. At least you don’t have stupid coaches and front office people talking about trading guys that are the foundation of your team. Serious culture issues. What a dumpster fire!

  15. Pettine seems like yet another coach who insists on squashing his mobile QB who excels outside of the pocket into being a pocket passer.

    Who’s to blame? The guy with the talent or the guy squashing it?

  16. It has never been more obvious that Pettine wants nothing to do with Johnny Manziel. The Browns are 2-7, Josh McCown is 52 years old, there is no future there. The only choice to make is Johnny. Of course he was inconsistent, it was his second NFL start.

  17. the best thing for manziel would be for him to get traded or cut and get away from this loser organization. why draft this guy knowing what he does best and then try and make him fit into a offense that does not take advantage of it? then to top it off you refuse to let him start and do nothing but criticize his play when he does? as if starting a game every 8 weeks is a fair way to judge him. he did what he had to do to get better after a humiliating rookie year but that does not seem to be enough for the coaching staff or the experts here at pft. free Johnny Football!!

  18. I will add that the browns had the better qb talent wise last night. But bengals have built around dalton the way browns should have been building around manziel. In a team sport talent will only take you so far when you have idiots standing on the sideline calling the shots.

  19. You put McCown on last years team and we’re in the playoffs. This years DEF is a becoming a joke. Don’t blame it all on McCown. Having said that, it’s time to let Johnny play, this team is going nowhere and McCown is going to be done playing soon. Play the kid and prepare for next year. Either Manziel is a QB or he’s not. Only way to tell is to play him. If Pet doesn’t play him and they still don’t win, he’ll be fired. If Pet plays him and Manziel shows no progress then Pet gets a shiny new, or old, QB next year.

  20. When your QB drives your team 90 yards, making 3 of those plays due to his own resourcefulness, then throws a TD strike on the run to pull the team within 4 points, and the coach’s first comments when being interviewed by a sideline reporter are words of tepid praise and criticism, YOU GOT ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW.


  21. Johnny Football scored the EXACT 10 points against the Bengals that Big Ben did the week before with 2 big differences.

    1) Big Ben scored his 10 points at home while Manziel scored 10 on the road.

    2) The Browns defense gave up 31 points but Manziel threw zero interceptions. The Steeler defense was trying DESPERATELY to hand Big Ben a 10-6 win but Big Ben would have none of that and threw back to back interceptions in the 4th quarter ( 3 picks total) to give the Bengals a late game TD and the win.

    That’s just how good Big Ben is. When people see these stats but keep insisting that Big Ben is better than Kaepernick or Manziel they’re the type of people who will keep insisting that a pound of gold weighs more than a pound of mud.

  22. Maybe one of the worst halftime adjustment teams in the NFL. Pettine seems to have the team prepped for the start of games though.

  23. Let the kid play. Let him get knocked-around. Let him make mistakes. Translation: let him develop into a good hard-charging QB that he can be. He proved to me he’s focused on the game and WANTS TO WIN! Let the kid play!!!

  24. I have been down with the BROWNS for 30 YEARS…..and they still CAN NOT get it right through HUNDREDS of PLAYERS, COACHING STAFFS MEMBERS, FRONT OFFICE PERSONNEL….good grief Charlie Brown what is it going to take????? I’m TIRED

  25. Someone needs to focus the attention on this moron Pettine.

    What the hell are you doing? Bashing a QB that just went 92 yards and scored a TD. Your team has constant penalties. Thats coaching and your team has bonehead penalties non-stop.

    You should go coach Flag Football at the YMCA Pettine thats about all you can handle.

    Yeah Tell Johnny not to get out of the pocket and make plays because that offensive line is so good. They cant run or pass block.

    Its amazing how such dumb people like Pettine and Farmer have NFL jobs. They both should have gotten fired today.

    Yeah but praise your WR Gabriel Pettine, that had a pass go off his knee and facemack. Hell I would stop throwing to a guy that couldnt catch the ball too.

    What about ripping Randy Starks for his stupid play.

    This guy is a total delta bravo.

  26. As a lifelong Browns fan, the absolute last thing I want to see is another head coach. Pettine totally threw Johnny under the bus on this one, sorry coach, but you’re the d’bag and can’t come up with a game plan, this one isn’t on Johnny pal!

  27. I’m sorry, but the Browns only scored 10 points Thursday night. Yet everyone is saying how great Manziel was because he completed a couple of passes? He led his team to 10 points! In London against the Jags, The Bills EJ Manuel put up 34 points and looked horrible doing it. No one thinks he played great.

  28. I can’t even stand to look at Pettine anymore. He disgusts me at just at the sight of him and I’m not even a Browns fan. Support your young QB or go kick rocks Pettine.

  29. Pettine says Manziel play was “inconsistent”.. So what would word would we use to characterize head coach and front office ? Worthless, oblivious, terrible ?? The shoe fits, wear it.

  30. Honestly, I’ve never seen a head football coach treat a young QB in public the way Pettine has treated Manziel. Strangest thing I’ve ever seen. There is some kind of battle involved here, and I’m guessing it has to be GM versus coach.

  31. No comments on your highest paid defence in the NFL? Your a defensive coach and your defence can’t stop the run, can’t cover receivers down field, a certainly can’t tackle. Maybe you should leave the offensive to Flip and concentrate on your terrible defence. You SUCK and so does your buddy O’Neil!!!

  32. Pettine and his bunch of Pop Warner/high school buddies don’t have a single clue what they’re doing. No wonder ‘Lil Shanny wanted out.

    You can’t have this much talent on the team and look worse and worse with each passing week. Sure, a big part of the problem with the “new Browns” has been the constant turnover in regimes but, remember, Pettine was NOT Farmer’s hire.

    While I’m far from impressed with Farmer’s picks, I even less impressed with the coaching, especially the lack of adjustments at half-time. Pettine has NO clue!

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