Aug 9, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions outside linebacker Kyle Van Noy (95) attempts to tackle Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel (2) during the second quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Johnny Manziel pulls ahead of Brian Hoyer in Cleveland Browns QB Competition

Both Brian Hoyer and Johnny Manziel had their moments during the Cleveland Browns preseason debut against the Lions Saturday night, but apparently Johnny Football did enough to pass his competition.

ESPN’s Bob Holtzman reported that a “team source” said Manziel was now the leader of of the quarterback battle. This comes a couple weeks after Holtzman reported that Browns players expected Hoyer to be named the starter “well before” the third preseason game.

So, how did Manziel pull ahead, when neither of the quarterbacks especially looked remarkable Saturday night?

According to Holtzman, a team source said Manziel is ahead “after showing a live and trademark playmaking ability outside the pocket,” via

Hoyer was 6-of-14 for 92 yards, while Manziel was 7-of-11 for 63 yards. He added 27 yards on six carries and ended with 90 total yards from scrimmage.

One question surrounding the quarterback battle entering Training Camp was, “Who would the team support?”

Pete Carroll is credited as being a genius for starting Russell Wilson ahead of Matt Flynn two years ago, but it was obvious to players on that team that Wilson was better. If Carroll started Flynn, he would’ve risked losing his team before the season even started.

Hoyer hasn’t done anything to lose the job, while Manziel hasn’t done anything to seize the top spot on the depth chart. That’s why it a little surprising to see Sports Illustrated’s Peter King tweet that the locker room is split between the two.

It’s really intriguing that Manziel has managed to make so many believers, so quickly, but while the latest reports have the former Heisman winner ahead of Hoyer, it’s unfathomable to believe that rookie head coach, Mike Pettine, will give his rookie a baptism by fire with starts at Pittsburgh, and then home against the Saints and Ravens–especially when a capable veteran in on the roster.

What do you think, is it obvious that Manziel pulled ahead?

Tags: Bob Holtzman Brian Hoyer Cleveland Browns ESPN Johnny Manziel Peter King Sports Illustrated

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