Davis threw two interceptions without a touchdown while completing 24-of-46 passes for 240 yards against the Steelers on Sunday. He also rushed for 22 yards on three carries, and lost a fumble. Davis failed to throw a touchdown while getting picked off three times in his two starts for Cleveland this season. The former Rams quarterback struggled mightily in place of Johnny Manziel (concussion) this week, and his ineptitude allowed Pittsburgh to sneak into the playoffs.
Davis will start in place of Johnny Manziel (concussion) in Sunday's regular season finale against the Steelers, ESPN.com reports. With Manziel out this week, the Browns have signed Pat Devlin to back Davis up this weekend. While Davis remains a speculative fantasy play in Week 17 as the 3-12 Browns limp to the finish line minus wideouts Brian Hartline and Andrew Hawkins, working in Davis' favor is that he'll be taking aim at a Steelers' defense that is allowing an average of 278.2 passing yards per game to date. Only the Saints and Giants have allowed more.
Davis appears in line to start Sunday's game against the Steelers with Johnny Manziel in the league's concussion protocol, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. Davis has appeared in two games for the Browns in 2015, once drawing a start over Manziel and another time filling in for an injured Josh McCown. Over those two contests, he completed a combined 66.7 percent of his passes and accumulated 307 yards through the air. If Manziel is cleared to play, Davis will once again serve as the backup, but this scenario appears unlikely with Manziel being a late entry into the concussion protocol. Davis's last start was a lopsided defeat against Cincinnati in which he targeted the now-injured Brian Hartline (collarbone) a team-high 11 times. Tight end Gary Barnidge checked in with eight targets in that game, while undrafted rookie Darius Jennings drew seven looks. It's not entirely clear if coach Mike Pettine will go with a similar game plan against Pittsburgh, who own's the league's No. 30-ranked pass defense (278.2 passing yards allowed per game).
Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel will start Sunday's game against the 49ers, the team announced Tuesday. With Josh McCown (collarbone) out for the year and Austin Davis coming off a terrible outing, the Browns will unsurprisingly turn back to Manziel for a four-game evaluation to close out the season. Manziel played pretty well in his last game before being benched for off-field transgressions, but the sum of his performance this season has still been mediocre. He has completed 59.4 percent of his passes for 7.3 yards per attempt, with five touchdowns and two interceptions, adding 90 yards on 17 carries. Manziel should have every opportunity to prove himself, as the weak Cleveland defense has consistently ensured that the team has to play from behind. There is some question regarding the health of top weapons Gary Barnidge (ankle) and Travis Benjamin (shoulder), but the Browns expect both to be ready for Sunday's favorable matchup with the 49ers.
Head coach Mike Pettine said that Browns will make a final decision on the starting quarterback at the conclusion of a meeting on Monday evening, Mike Garafolo of FOX Sports 1 reports. Following a report on Monday morning that Johnny Manziel would return to the helm of the Browns' offense, Davis was the odd man out in the QB ranks, but Pettine's comments indicate that he remains in the mix for the job. If Davis sticks as the No. 1 signal caller, he'll bring along a 66.7 completion percentage, 307 passing yards, and one touchdown versus one interception in two appearances this season.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|5||10/09||New England Patriots||15||19.78|
|8||10/30||New York Jets||10||18.75|
|12||11/27||New York Giants||30||24.56|
|16||12/24||San Diego Chargers||13||19.56|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||62.7||849||4||4||23||0||55|