Johnny Manziel rumors went from the Cleveland Browns releasing him to Manziel becoming the Browns starting quarterback again. A report from CBS Sports states that Manziel will replace Josh McCown as the starting quarterback when the Browns play the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday, November 5. This is big news for Manziel, as it gives the former Texas A&M quarterback another chance to show what he can do in the NFL.
As Cleveland.com reported earlier in the week, Josh McCown suffered an injury to his ribs against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, November 1. He was clearly in a lot of pain on the field but tried to tough it out and keep the Browns in the game. He had X-rays done on his ribs following the game, but it wasn’t immediately revealed whether he had suffered any lasting injuries. The team listed him as day-to-day, and suddenly the Johnny Manziel rumors were out in full force again.
Cleveland Browns coach Mike Pettine spoke briefly about the injury that McCown suffered, but he also didn’t give specific details about what took place against the Cardinals.
“I’m not going to get into specifics. We’ll see how he is the next couple days. Josh is sore and it’s difficult this week just given that it’s a short week. He’ll be day to day. We’ll know a lot more when we get into tomorrow and into Wednesday.”
Now that Wednesday has arrived, the Browns are starting to take a step back from the “day-today” prognosis for Week 9. Rather than keep everyone in the dark about what will happen on Thursday night football, Pettine instead made the announcement that Manziel would be his starting quarterback against the Bengals.
“On the short week we realized that Josh just wasn’t going to be able to get to the point where he could go. Johnny has worked hard to prepare himself. He is excited about his opportunity and we are all looking forward to the challenge we face in a good Bengals football team on Thursday night.”
Manziel has played in parts of four games this season, completing 28-of-50 passes for 393 yards. He also has three touchdowns, one interception, and four fumbles in that time. Those are the first touchdown passes of his NFL career, giving Manziel a quarterback rating of 93.2 this season. His numbers haven’t been that bad, but his offseason troubles continue to cut into his opportunities to lead this team. With McCown hurt again, Manziel will take the mantle on Thursday night in primetime.
These Johnny Manziel rumors might even make him relevant in fantasy football for the week. Since six teams have bye weeks, including the Seattle Seahawks and Detroit Lions, there are a lot of quarterbacks out this week. That might just make Manziel a quarterback for some owners to take a chance on. He has to go up against one of the better teams in the NFL this season, though, as the Cincinnati Bengals have a 7-0 record already. The Bengals also have a huge lead on the rest of the AFC North and could move even further ahead by beating the Browns.
The 2-6 Browns have nothing to lose by giving Manziel at least one more shot, especially since it looks like the team is going to select high in the 2016 NFL Draft. Even before any announcements that Josh McCown would miss the game against the Bengals, Cincinnati was favored by the Vegas oddsmakers to win by 11 1/2 points. Now these latest Johnny Manziel rumors could shift it even further, especially with the Cleveland Browns taking the show on the road. Game time is 8:25 p.m. ET on NFL Network.
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