Johnny Manziel’s two-week timeout for his off-field behaviour appears to be over as he is now in line to start the final four weeks of the season for the Cleveland Browns after being benched.
Chris Mortensen of ESPN reports that a source told him Manziel will replace Austin Davis as the starting quarterback “unless Manziel had done something to jeopardize his status between the end of Sunday’s loss and Monday.”
That last statement is telling as it suggests that the Browns are still not convinced that Manziel can go an entire week without doing something that will make headlines for reasons other than playing football.
Manziel had taken over as the starting quarterback and looked good, throwing for 372 yards and a touchdown in a Week 10 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. However, he was quickly benched in favour of Josh McCown after video surfaced showing Manziel partying at a club in Austin during the team’s bye week.
The Browns had reportedly expected Manziel to stay in Cleveland during the bye week and felt “betrayed” when he did not, according to Ian Rapoport. In addition, Jay Glazer reported that Manziel lied to coach Mike Pettine when confronted by the team about the video.
This came after Manziel spent nearly two months during the off-season in a rehabilitation facility.
When McCown was injured and ruled out for the remainder of the season, Pettine initially turned to Davis as the replacement, with Manziel listed as the third-string-quarterback.
Now, assuming Manziel can stay out of trouble, he will likely be the starting quarterback for the final four weeks of the season, a 4-week audition to prove he can be the team’s starting quarterback in 2016.
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