Cleveland holds off on naming starting quarterback
Browns coach Mike Pettine said he is not ready to pick between rookie Johnny Manziel and Brian Hoyer for season opener against Pittsburgh.
The Associated Press
CLEVELAND — This summer saga, packed with drama, celebrity and clumsiness, isn’t quite over for the Browns.
Hoyer vs. Manziel marches on.
Cleveland first-year coach Mike Pettine still hasn’t chosen his Week 1 starting quarterback, and that’s not his fault. Brian Hoyer and Johnny Manziel haven’t convinced him — or anyone, really — that they deserve the job.
Pettine had been expected to announce during a teleconference on Tuesday whether Hoyer, the inexperienced veteran and hometown hero coming back from knee surgery, or Manziel, the hyped rookie and former Heisman Trophy winner, would start the Sept. 7 opener at Pittsburgh.
But the decision has been delayed, and it could carry through Cleveland’s third exhibition game on Saturday.
Pettine said Cleveland’s coaching staff will meet Wednesday night and could then choose a starter. Maybe.
“We’re not in position to make it at this point in time,” Pettine said. “We’ll decide later if we’re ready to name a starter. We could have one named, and I’m not ruling that out. That’s something we’re going to discuss. And if we do have to wait until after the next game, so be it.”
Pettine reiterated that “all options are on the table,” meaning he could name Hoyer or Manziel or push a decision back until after the Browns host St. Louis in their third exhibition.
Meanwhile, Manziel could be fined more than $11,000 for giving the Washington bench the middle finger — and being caught doing so on national TV — during the third quarter of the Browns’ 24-23 exhibition loss on ESPN’s “Monday Night Football,” the NFL Network is reporting.
Washington linebacker Brian Orakpo, the player who showed Manziel the money sign after a sack by teammate Ryan Kerrigan, called the bird-flipping incident “hilarious.” Manziel called it a “lapse of judgment,” while Pettine said the gesture “does not sit well.”
• The Minnesota Vikings and former punter Chris Kluwe said they reached a settlement averting a lawsuit over Kluwe’s claim that the team wrongfully released him last year because of his outspoken support for same-sex marriage rights.
Under the deal, the Vikings will donate an undisclosed sum of money to five gay rights-related charities over the next five years. Kluwe said he won’t receive any money as part of the settlement.
• The Pittsburgh Steelers and offensive tackle Marcus Gilbert, 26, have reached agreement on a new six-year contract that runs through the 2019 season. Gilbert, a second-round pick in the 2011 draft, has started 34 games in three seasons.
• San Francisco has signed defensive lineman Glenn Dorsey to a two-year contract extension through 2016. Dorsey, 29, is sidelined with a torn left biceps muscle that required surgery. He was injured Aug. 1, but hasn’t been ruled out for the season.
• Vikings wide receiver Jerome Simpson has appealed a pending three-game suspension for a repeat violation of the NFL’s substance-abuse policy.
• The New York Jets have placed rookie wide receiver Shaquelle Evans on season-ending injured reserve after he underwent shoulder surgery. The fourth-round draft pick out of UCLA missed most of training camp.
• Former NFL and University of Arizona kicker Max Zendejas has pleaded guilty to two counts of criminal damage involving a restaurant space he leased from the Tucson school. Pima County prosecutors say Zendejas, 50, could get up to two years in prison when he’s sentenced Sept. 30.