Saturday night was the much anticipated debut of Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel. Although it was just a preseason game, the football world had been chomping at the bit to see the former Heisman Trophy winning quarterback. Manziel’s first action came against the Detroit Lions.
“Johnny Football” entered the game in the second quarter. In two quarters of action, he compiled 90 total yards of offense. Completing seven out of 11 passes for 63 yards, Johnny also ran the ball six times for 27 yards, including a 16-yard scramble for a first down that electrified the crowd and the social media world.
Manziel’s performance wasn’t necessarily awe inspiring, but there definitely was a new buzz surrounding the Browns. The outing didn’t put any real separation between him and Brian Hoyer in the Browns’ QB competition, Manziel showed flashes of his potential as an NFL quarterback, but there is always room to improve as he alluded to after the game. The other quarterback in the Clevleland quarterback competition is Hoyer (who got the start), completed just six of his 14 attempts for 92 yards. The key difference being that he managed to lead the team to six points while Manziel led his unit to just three total points. The Browns lost to the Lions 13-12.
Manziel will make his first start next week against the Washington Redskins. It will be interesting to see how Manziel reacts to facing a first string defense, especially one that has two of the better pass rushers in the league in Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan. He will also get his first opportunity to play an extended period of time with the entire first team offense, as he only got the chance to play with the first team offensive line in Saturday night’s loss. Who knows what Johnny could do with the first string skill players on the field?
All eyes will once again be on Johnny Football on Monday, August 18th, as the Manziel show hits FedEx Field.