NFL agent Joe Linta, who represents quarterback Brian Hoyer, was a guest on WEIR Sports a couple of days ago to talk about his client and a couple of other things related to the league. Thanks to Brent Sobleski (follow him on Twitter) for making us aware of the interview and for requesting that the segment be published online.
You can listen to the interview below, or read the parts related to Hoyer that I transcribed. The most interesting part is the fact that the Cleveland Browns actually called Linta a month ago with the intentions of re-signing Hoyer, prior to the hiring of the team's new offensive coordinator. Hoyer's camp decided to wait, but things broke down somewhere along the way, whether it was the hiring of John DeFilippo, or Ray Farmer preferring to go a different direction when Josh McCown hit the open market.
Question: "The Browns went out and signed Josh McCown. What was your reaction, and did you ever meet or sit down with the organization to discuss any hard numbers over Brian?"
Linta: "They had called me to re-sign him about a month ago, before they had hired Flip, the OC (offensive coordinator). I had suggested, 'Before we get too far down the road with this, let's give Brian a chance to meet with Flip and meet with Pettine, and then sit down with Ray [Farmer]. The numbers guys agreed with that. Brian did have a chance to meet with Pettine and Flip, but that meeting with Farmer never took place. But, he knows exactly how the coaches feel about him."
Question: "When you look at the Browns' situation, is there a feeling that they never gave him the full support to be successful in Cleveland?"
Linta: "I don't know if I would say the full support, but he knew there was an elephant in the room, so-to-speak. When you draft a quarterback in the first round, whether his name is Manziel or anything else, there's going to be that pressure to get that guy on the field at some point. Brian also knew he wasn't afraid of any of the rookie quarterbacks coming in and felt he would have beaten anybody out. Brian's a really confident guy, and as I predicted [last May], he did win the job and led them to a playoff run to the point where they were 7-6, and I think everybody in Cleveland would've signed up for the chance to be in the playoff hunt at 7-6."
Question: "So there was no ultimatum that either he start, or he's going somewhere else?"
Linta: "No, that was someone with an agenda putting that in the media, that's ridiculous."
Question: "What are the main priorities for Hoyer looking forward?"
Linta: "An opportunity to start. He knows that he's a quality starter in the league. He doesn't have to be validated now. Everybody that knows football knows, he may not be in the top three or five, but he's a quality starter who is the only quarterback in the last 20 years for the Browns whose had a winning record. He knows he's a quality starter, so he's looking for an opportunity to compete. He doesn't expect anything to be handed to him, so that's going to be first and foremost. Secondary is the ability for him to get along with the coach or the offensive coordinator more specifically."