Are you ready for some Johnny Football?
Cleveland rookie Johnny Manziel has been named the starting quarterback for the Browns’ home game against Cincinnati on Sunday, according to Fox’s Jay Glazer.
Glazer tweeted: “Breaking: Johnny Manziel and Brian Hoyer have been informed that Manziel will in fact be the starter this week.”
Multiple news outlets subsequently confirmed the report.
Hoyer, the starting quarterback to this point, has struggled in recent weeks as the Browns went from first place in the AFC North to losing three of four and dropping into last at 7-6.
In the last three games, Hoyer has had no touchdowns and seven interceptions.
Manziel, a first-round pick, provided a spark in a Week 13 loss at Buffalo, replacing the struggling Hoyer and directing a touchdown drive that he capped by running 10 yards up the middle to score.
On Monday, Browns Coach Mike Pettine called the recent passing game “substandard” and said that “it’s natural to lean the other way” in picking a starting quarterback.
But the coach also defended the play of Hoyer.
“When you go back and watch the tape, there are clearly some throws that he missed, but I think it was also exaggerated by how poorly we were in the pass game around him,'' Pettine said, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “That's difficult. The quarterback is only as good as his supporting cast, so when the guys around him play well, Brian will play well.
“It's rare that there's a quarterback that can transcend his supporting cast. You go to even the best ones in the league and the guys around him aren't playing at the levels they should be. It's very difficult to overcome that, but we're in the results business. We've lost two in a row. We all know what the numbers have been in the pass game, and for us to be successful, they need to improve.”