The Browns drafted Johnny Manziel with the 22nd pick Thursday, the third quarterback they've taken at that sport in the past seven years (previous candidates tasked to turn things around: Brady Quinn and Brandon Weeden). But Brian Hoyer, who played well in limited duty last season before he was sidelined with an ACL injury, has no intentions of rolling over and gifting the starting gig to Manziel in 2014.
"Everybody in America knew we were going to draft a quarterback," Hoyer told NFL.com's Ian Rapoport. "I've said a million times, I have all the confidence in the world in myself. So we'll just see how it plays out."
General manager Ray Farmer even texted Hoyer to let him know the team was taking Manziel. Hoyer's response: "bring him on."
From the perspective of mid-May, first-year coach Mike Pettine says the job is wide open.
"Whether he was taken at four, or going at 22, it will be a competition and I meant that when I said it," said Pettine, via the Cleveland Plain Dealer. "I don't think you can hand jobs to people when they come in. It's a situation where despite what's around him and what's following him -- and there will be that pressure to play him -- we're in the business of evaluating the best quarterback for the Cleveland Browns to win football games and that's who's going to play, whether that's Brian Hoyer or Johnny Manziel."
Hoyer, who went to high school in Cleveland, was a fan favorite a season ago, but that may have all changed in the past 24 hours. Whether Manziel is on the field in Week 1 when the Browns face the Steelers remains to be seen, but sooner or later, he'll be starting -- and we're leaning toward sooner.