The Cleveland Browns have added to the intrigue of their team with the addition of Johnny Manziel. However the team is expecting Brian Hoyer to start and for Manziel to sit out this year to learn, best case scenario. It is still highly possible that Hoyer falters or Manziel shines and their roles are reversed. With the tough schedule the Browns have out of the gate it is also possible that Hoyer’s performance has nothing to do with him and has to do with the opponents. Has Hoyer, as a hometown kid, built up enough good will to fend off the fans through a rough stretch? Will Mike Pettine, and at some level Ray Farmer, have the patience to let Manziel sit the whole year, barring a Hoyer injury, or want to win so badly that they try anything?
Matt Miller of Bleacher Report did a write up ranking all the NFL teams’ QB situation, including backups. Does he see a great improvement with Manziel and Hoyer at the top of the depth chart or does he see the same old Browns? Lets take a look:
28. Cleveland Browns
Projected Depth Chart: 1—Brian Hoyer, 2—Johnny Manziel (rookie), 3—Tyler Thigpen
The Cleveland Browns have a very interesting situation at quarterback. Interesting isn’t always good.
Brian Hoyer flashed some starter potential in two games before being injured four pass attempts into his third start. He was Mike Lombardi’s guy, and that regime is no longer in town, but coming off an ACL tear, he is the most NFL-ready of the team’s quarterbacks. He could become a Chad Henne-like quarterback for the Browns as they groom their future star.
That star is Johnny Manziel. The team’s second first-round pick in 2014, he will be starting sooner or later, and I’d bet on sooner. He has rare athleticism and instincts for a quarterback, but no one has any idea how well his blend of run-and-shoot quarterback play will translate to the NFL—especially at 6’0″ and 210 pounds. He may be the next Steve Young, but right now he’s another rookie with big expectations and a lot to prove.
Not sure becoming a “Chad Henne-Like quarterback” is a compliment for Hoyer. Yet even with a steady, unproven guy like Hoyer up top and a star in the making in Manziel as the backup Miller still has the Browns as the 28th ranked QB group. Below them are the Texans, Lion (surprising), Bills (One EJ Manuel injury away from the Browns getting a Top 3 pick next year) and the Jaguars. Just above the Browns are proven teams like the Falcons and Ravens and unproven ones like the Rams, Titans and Bucs.
In a QB driven league could Miller’s rankings, if right, mean the Browns are bound for another trip in the Top 10 picks in the NFL Draft, 2 if the Bills also appear as Miller expects. With very little proven in Hoyer and even more question marks around Manziel’s style of play could Miller actually have the Browns ranked too high?
Where would you rank the Browns QB group? Do you think Miller is too high, low on the Browns?