CLEVELAND (AP) — Brian Hoyer has held off rookie Johnny Manziel for at least another week.
Browns coach Mike Pettine has chosen Hoyer to start at quarterback ahead of Manziel in Cleveland’s second exhibition game on Monday night at Washington against Robert Griffin III and the Redskins.
Pettine’s decision is somewhat surprising since he has stated that the quarterback competition is “open” and Hoyer started the preseason opener last week at Detroit. Pettine has said the two quarterbacks will share the snaps with Cleveland’s first-team offense against the Redskins.
“It’s just something right now where we are comfortable with Brian going out there to start the game,” Pettine said Thursday. “I think it’s a little overblown as to who the starter is going to be. 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.”
Earlier this week, Pettine did not know if the quarterbacks would rotate by series or quarter. Pettine did say Cleveland’s starter would play “in the neighborhood” of a half.
Hoyer and Manziel have been competing for the starting job since training camp opened last month, and their back-and-forth battle appears to be headed into its final days.
Neither QB has taken control of the job, leading to endless speculation about who is leading and who needs to make up ground.