Brian Hoyer will start at quarterback for the Cleveland Browns in their preseason opener Saturday against the Detroit Lions. Hoyer has been considered the favorite since the beginning of training camp.
Pettine had said entering training camp that the two would split reps at practice, but Hoyer was the only one given snaps with the first team at the beginning of camp, fueling speculation he was ahead in the quarterback battle.
That began to change last week, as Manziel reportedly narrowed the gap between he and Hoyer and then took reps with the first-team offense for the first time Monday. Pettine insisted it was "part of the plan."
Hoyer won all three games he started for Cleveland last season before tearing his right ACL and missing the rest of the season. The Browns selected Manziel with their second first-round pick in the 2014 NFL draft.
Withers also reported that Hoyer took a hit to his surgically repaired knee Tuesday, but said he has had "no issues."
- Sarah Barshop and Ben Estes