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Browns Say Manziel Has to Earn Starting Spot

May 12 2014, 3:04pm CDT | by , in News

Browns Say Manziel Has to Earn Starting Spot
Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Cleveland owner Jimmy Haslam says the Browns have told Johnny Manziel to start acting "like a backup quarterback.''

The Cleveland Browns are excited to have Johnny Manziel on their team -- but aren't ready to give him the starting job just yet.  Teammates and coaching staff are letting the media know that he has to earn the no. 1 spot on the roster.

Currently Brian Hoyer is listed as the no. 1 quarterback going into summer camp.  The team's owner, Jimmy Haslam, made that clear to the local paper Cleveland Plain Dealer.

"Brian Hoyer is the starting quarterback," Haslam said while speaking at a Pro Football Hall of Fame luncheon in Canton. "It's his job to lose."

"We were frank with [Manziel] on Friday that's the expectation, you're the backup quarterback," he added. "This is a hard-working, blue-collar town, this isn't Hollywood. We want you to come in and go to work."

Manziel isn't worried about his position on the depth chart going into training camp this summer.  In an interview with ESPN he stated that he was just happy to be playing football -- and wasn't concerned about whether he went first or last in the draft as-long-as he was able to keep playing.

"I think it's awesome to finally have walked across that stage, and be selected in the first round," said Manziel, "The NFL draft for me and where I came from, how rare that is, and how special that is to me."

Currently Manziel has the top selling jersey from the NFL draft -- and has been able to market himself to the majority of the public.  CEO of Klutch Sports Group, Richard Paul, said how well it continues will be determined on his level of play on the field.

"The most important thing for Johnny is playing football, and obviously his brand will increase if he plays the game at a high level," said Paul, who participated in Monday's 15th annual Cleveland Browns Foundation Golf Tournament at Stonewater Golf Club. "The focus now, however, is not so much off the field, but on the field. He knows that by focusing on the game, everything will take care of itself."

Manziel's Cleveland teammates are happy to have him playing alongside them -- but are taking his arrival as they would any other player.

"I think good old Johnny Football is going to be a good addition to Cleveland," center Alex Mack said Monday. "Don't know who the starter is going to be, though."

"Coach Pettine talked about drafting competition, and I think he stuck to that," tight end Jordan Cameron said. "It seems like it's going to be a lot of competition. We'll see how that battle goes."

For now Hoyer remains the starting quarterback for the Browns team that won the two games he started in last year.  According to the players and coaches it is his job to lose from everyone else on the roster.

"Hoyer's going to come out fighting," linebacker Jabaal Sheard said. "I'm not worried about that."

 

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