Per NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport reported first — minutes later confirmed by Browns head coach Mike Pettine by email to media members — that Brian Hoyer will start against the Washington Redskins on Monday night in the Browns' second preseason game.
“It’s just something right now where we are comfortable with Brian going out there to start the game,” Pettine said.
Hoyer had started the preseason opener last Saturday against the Detroit Lions, with Manziel relieving him late in the second quarter and playing much of the third. With neither playing well enough to make a big statement — zero touchdown drives between them at Detroit — the pecking order appears to be remaning status quo for now.
Funny: A wild flurry of (baseless) rumors swept the social-media sites on Wednesday that Hoyer would be part of a trade to the Houston Texans for Andre Johnson. Not only have those been quashed, but Hoyer remains in the pole position heading into Monday's primetime game against the Redskins.
Manziel will get ample time under center, though, and Pettine also said, per Rapoport, that the two quarterbacks should receive equal run with the first-team offense. That's significant because it tells us that Manziel has not been eliminated from the derby to win the starting job Week 1 in Pittsburgh.
“I think it’s a little overblown as to who the starter is going to be,” Pettine said. “The key component, as I’ve stated earlier this week, is that we are going to balance the reps. We will play it a little by ear as it goes on, we haven’t truly decided as far as the rotation but the goal is, for when we look at the stat sheet at halftime, that they both have the same amount of repetitions and hopefully they both get a good amount of work.”
That said, Pettine has said he wants to name that starter well in advance of the Browns' third preseason game next Saturday in Cleveland against the St. Louis Rams.
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