By Savannah Malnar
Johnny “Money” Manziel may have been the most hyped rookie coming to play in the NFL this season. The college star was drafted by the Cleveland Browns, and immediately there was speculation as to if he would start over last year’s starter Brian Hoyer. Despite the rumors, Manziel only saw the field once (on a trick play to catch a pass from Hoyer) until last Sunday. The Browns were down 20-3 to the Buffalo Bills, and Cleveland coach Mike Pettine had enough of Hoyer and gave Manziel the field with about 12 minutes left in the game. Manziel promptly drove the Browns down the field and ran in a 10-yard, marking the first rushing touchdown for Cleveland in four years.
The Browns still ended up falling to the Bills 26-10, but that didn’t stop the rush of people again calling for Manziel to start for the remainder of the year. Cleveland fans seemed to all be on the same side; the team should no longer be Hoyer’s.
Local and national media humanized the event a little more, highlighting Hoyer’s disappointment in being pulled. Hoyer spoke with reporters post-game, and the most common quote in each media account of the event is, “So I think you guys know from before, I’m never going to just hang my head and feel sorry for myself. We have four games left and whatever coach decides to do, I’ll be here to support this team and obviously I feel like this is my team and this is my job so we’ll see what happens moving forward.” Hoyer still believes the starting position should be his, especially after the strong start the team showcased early in the season.
One Browns beat writer, Mary Kay Cabot, focused on Manziel instead. Her article discussed his gratitude for the chance to play and also his humility and acknowledgement that he couldn’t have performed as well without the veterans on the Browns offense. Manziel felt lucky that his one fumble got overturned as an incomplete pass despite his opinion that his arm had not moved forward yet.
Cabot and most other sports writers seem to be under the same impression: Manziel is going to get his chance to start soon, if not in Week 14.