NFL Rumors: If Not Week 1, When Will Cleveland Browns Name Johnny Manziel Starting Quarterback?

In case you missed the breaking news, the Cleveland Browns have named Brian Hoyer the starting quarterback for Week 1 against the Pittsburgh Steelers. While it may sound like a reward, think about it for a second. We all know that Johnny Manziel will become the starting quarterback for the Browns sooner rather than later. The fans want it. Half of the players want it. Personally, the guy repulses me, but he will start at some point for the Dawg Pound. Hoyer has won the starter’s job, but look at what he will face: the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 1, followed by the New Orleans Saints and Baltimore Ravens.

In my mind, that means that Hoyer and the Browns will be 0-3 heading into the team’s bye week in Week 4. Hoyer will not have Josh Gordon to throw the ball to, and the entire offense has looked sluggish, at best. That is, of course, except for when Connor Shaw has been under center. He was a winner and leader for the South Carolina Gamecocks, and it would be interesting to see what he could do with the first-team offense.

But, more on that at a later date.

For now, back to Hoyer. With two weeks in between games vs. the Ravens and then Tennessee Titans, many assume this may be the ideal time for a quarterback change. The fans will be asking why the team drafted Manziel if he is going to sit on the bench. If Hoyer’s numbers are less than stellar and the team fails to win, many will call for his immediate benching. That will obviously open up the door for Manziel to take over.

But again, when?

After the Browns travel to Tennessee to take on the Titans, they will return home to the Dawg Pound to face the Steelers again. Ideal? Not even close. Pittsburgh will be licking its chops to pound Manziel into the ground. Especially after seeing what one entrepreneur was able to create:

I'm not the biggest Steelers fan, but this is great!

I’m not the biggest Steelers fan, but this is great!

Eventually, Manziel will have to get used to taking beatings from teams and players looking to punish him for being an arrogant, spoiled, entitled, immature little punk. It is going to happen. Maybe the Browns decide to give Hoyer two more games to take a beating against the Titans and Steelers, and then insert Manziel in with the first-team offense for games against the Jacksonville Jaguars and Oakland Raiders. If he makes it out alive – and that may be a big if – the Browns will take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Cincinnati Bengals, before facing off against the Houston Texans. That will mean going up against J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney.

That is something I would love to see.

Either way, it should not come as a surprise that Hoyer will be the Browns’ Week 1 starter against the Steelers. Manziel is not ready. He said as much.

But, whether he is ready or not, whether it is immediately after the bye, shortly after, or perhaps even before, Manziel will become the starting quarterback for the Browns in 2014.

You can bet your middle finger on it.


About the author

Rob Kelley

Rob Kelley is a sports reporter for various newspapers in Florida, and is trying to break back into the sports writing game after a brief hiatus following the publishing of his first book, I'm Not a Quitter. He recently resigned as Editor-in-Chief and lead writer for The South Shore Magazine to pursue better opportunities. You can follow him on Twitter @RobKelley24.