Just when might Johnny Manziel start a preseason game? Well, it could be Aug. 18 against the Washington Redskins.
Emphasis on could.
Manziel and Brian Hoyer have been splitting time with the starters in training camp, so the Cleveland Browns’ second preseason game would seem like a logical place for the No. 22 pick in the NFL draft to get a chance to start.
“That’s possible,” Coach Mike Pettine said (via Ohio.com). “That seems like about a month away to me.”
Hoyer will start Saturday night against the Detroit Lions. “It was his job,” Pettine said Wednesday, referring to Hoyer. “He was the one coming into [camp]. We did want to mix the groups up as we did, but he’s done nothing to have that taken away from him, so he’ll be out there with the starters.”
Although Pittsburgh Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau is preparing to face Manziel in the Sept. 7 opener against Cleveland, Pettine said he will “more than likely” decide the starter based on the first two preseason games and hopes to make the pick before the third preseason game.
“I think more weight will be put on those [first two exhibition games] ’cause it’s live reps,” Pettine said, “but the practice part will still be important.”