It didn't take long for Johnny Manziel to insert himself right back into the quarterback conversation in Cleveland. Earlier this week, he was named the Browns' backup behind Brian Hoyer, and after a tepid outing from Hoyer Saturday, Manziel took the field in the third quarter and led the Browns on a four-play, 14-yard drive that ended with Manziel scampering seven yards into the end zone.
And to Manziel's credit, he stuck with his more traditional hand signage.
Johnny Manziel smartly passes up the middle finger celebration and goes with money fingers after first TD. pic.twitter.com/nZADVUWTnw— John Breech (@johnbreech) August 24, 2014
Manziel might want to save the money sign for TDs against guys who are still going to be in the league in a couple of weeks.— Bart Hubbuch (@HubbuchNYP) August 24, 2014
Okay, four plays in 14 yards isn't exactly the stuff of legend, and neither is a seven-yard scramble during an otherwise meaningless preseason game. But these are the Browns, a franchise aspiring for mediocrity with a fan base begging for anything resembling hope. And Manziel provides that, even if it looks like he'll begin the season on the bench.
But as we've been saying for weeks now, Manziel will be the Browns' starter no later than Week 5. The team opens the season against the Steelers, Saints and Ravens before a Week 4 bye. If they go 0-3, there's no conceivable reason to stick with Hoyer who has looked very much like a backup this preseason.