Is Johnny Manziel Going To Win The Starting Quarterback Job During The Browns’ Preseason Game Tonight?
Even though tonight’s NFL preseason game between the Cleveland Browns and Washington Redskins is pretty much meaningless in the grand scheme of things, you could argue that it’s going to be the most important game of Johnny Manziel‘s preseason. At the moment, all reports out of Cleveland seem to indicate that Manziel could be Cleveland’s Week 1 starter against the Pittsburgh Steelers. He has performed as well as fellow quarterback Brian Hoyer in practice and played well in the Browns’ first preseason game of the summer against the Detroit Lions. So Manziel might be ready to assume the starting QB role once the NFL regular season starts.
But first, if he wants the job, he’s going to need to put up a solid performance against the Redskins. He’s not going to be the starter when Cleveland takes the field tonight. But he is going to take some reps with the Browns’ starting lineup and he’s going to be under a microscope, seeing as how the Browns/Redskins game will be nationally televised by ESPN. So if he wants to gain some favor nationally and solidify himself as the Browns’ starting QB, he’s going to need to put on a show and make it crystal clear that he’s got what it takes to beat out Hoyer for the starting QB role. And if he does that, it’ll likely lead to him starting the always-important third preseason game for the Browns (the third preseason game of the season is typically when NFL teams allow their starters to play for an entire half) and could quite possibly indicate that he’s the Browns’ guy moving forward.
Before any of that happens, though, Johnny Football needs to perform well on the field tonight. If he comes out and throws (or runs) for a touchdown and looks good, he could become the frontrunner for the Browns’ job. But if he doesn’t—or worse, if he struggles in front of the entire country—Manziel might be looking at a backup role for at least the start of the season.
Either way, the country is going to be watching what he does tonight. And it’ll be interesting to see how he responds to it when he takes the field.