Following a long, drawn-out quarterback competition that some argue did more harm than good, the Browns finally have a starting signalcaller – Brian Hoyer.
Browns head coach Mike Pettine announced his decision this morning, as Vic Carucci of ClevelandBrowns.com broke the news.
#Browns name Brian Hoyer starting QB.— Vic Carucci (@viccarucci) August 20, 2014
The decision comes just two days after a dreadful performance by the Browns offense against the Redskins on Monday Night Football. Neither Hoyer nor Johnny Manziel emerged as the clear winner, leading Pettine to pick the more experienced option in Hoyer.
"He was the clear leader from the beginning," Pettine told Carucci. "We've maintained all along that if it was close, I would prefer to go with the more experience player. Brian has done a great job in the meeting rooms and with his teammates on the practice field and in the locker room."
The news comes as little surprise, as Pettine seemed to be leaning towards Hoyer when he admitted yesterday that Manziel's one-finger salute to the Redskins would play a factor in the decision.
Pettine and his offensive staff came to the decision last night and told the team this morning before the news broke. As promised, Pettine made the final call before the third preseason game.
Hoyer only competed 2-of-6 passes for 16 yards against the Redskins on Monday, but Pettine said the decision was based on his entire body of work.
"I think Brian’s been very poised," Pettine said. "I think he’s handled the situation well. He’s had a lot of things going on."
As noted by Daryl Ruiter of 92.3 The Fan, Hoyer will be the 13th different signalcaller to start on opening day since 1999. Hoyer will also start against the Rams at home on Saturday as the offense will try to find some kind of a rhythm.
Pettine made sure to note that the decision does not reflect badly on Johnny Manziel, only that Hoyer is the quarterback who is more ready to go in Week 1 against the Steelers.
"He’s certainly made great strides," Pettine said on ClevelandBrowns.com. "We are pleased with where [Manziel] is, and he has shown that he has come a long way in his ability to pick up the playbook, be coachable and lead an offense. We are confident that Johnny is going to have a great future, but we just felt that Brian still had a decided edge on him."
Judging by our poll the other day, 70% of you should agree with the decision that Pettine made: