Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel told reporters after his team’s 31–10 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday that he wants to remain the starter, but coach Mike Pettine did not give away who would lead the team next week.
“Yes, absolutely,” Manziel said when asked if he wanted to retain his starting role. “We get a few days off now to refresh and get a break ... come back, watch the film and then get ready to go for the following week.”
Manziel was given the opportunity to start because regular starter Josh McCown was sidelined with a rib injury. McCown told ESPN he was having difficulty breathing, and no official time table has been given for his return.
In McCown’s absence, Manziel completed 15 of 33 passes for 168 yards and one touchdown. Most of that production came in the first half of the game, though, and Manziel was sacked three times in the second half.
Pettine called Manziel’s performance “inconsistent.”
“When we get in and get back from this time off, we will assess what pool of players are available and go ahead and make those decisions from there,” Pettine said. “This will be a good time to step away and reassess where we are moving forward.”
The Browns next play the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 10.
- Erin Flynn