It’s Johnny Manziel’s time in Cleveland
Manziel will be the starter the rest of the season instead of Josh McCown, the team announced Tuesday. FOX Sports NFL Insider Jay Glazer first reported the news.
Making his fifth career start, Manziel passed for 372 yards in Cleveland’s 30-9 loss at Pittsburgh. He did all he could, but it wasn’t enough to stop the Browns (2-8) from losing their fifth straight game and falling to 2-13 in their past 15 under Pettine, who could become the latest Browns coach to get fired.
Pettine had high praise for Manziel, who started for the second week in a row for an injured Josh McCown. Unlike his outing the previous week against Cincinnati when he was indecisive and bailed from the pocket, Manziel took advantage of Pittsburgh’s soft coverage and completed 33 of 45 passes with one touchdown.
Manziel also overcame fumbling on his first play, a turnover the Steelers turned into a field goal. On the road, in a hostile environment against a rival, Johnny Football did better than OK.
“He showed significant progress,” Pettine told reporters. “That was one of the better quarterback performances. I’ve seen where things have gone bad early and guys go in the tank and they get that glazed look in their eye. He was the exact opposite. He was loose. He was into it. I thought he did an outstanding job in between series, getting input from the quarterbacks.
“I just thought the improvement he made from the Cincinnati game to this one was a leap. Kind of given what he’s gone through, you’re just proud of the kid and happy for him. I just wish we had a better result from a team standpoint because he played his (butt) off.”