Cleveland Browns coach Mike Pettine said Tuesday that it would be ideal to make a decision on the team's starting quarterback Tuesday night, according to Mary Kay Cabot of The Plain Dealer in Cleveland.
Pettine would like to decide during a planned meeting with coaches and probably GM Ray Farmer, but said it's possible a decision won't be made until after the team's next preseason game on Saturday against St. Louis.
#Browns Pettine on QB decision: "no we're not in a position to make it at this time. meeting about QBs will occur later.''— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) August 19, 2014
#Browns Pettine: "If we do have to wait until after the next game so be it.'' Said it's still ideal to decide later today.— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) August 19, 2014
#Browns Pettine said there's a lot of common ground on staff about QBs, "not a lot of divide amongst the staff.''— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) August 19, 2014
On Friday, Pettine said that he hoped to decide by Tuesday. Pettine also said Friday he was unsure if he would make a "permanent commitment" to either quarterback.
"Quarterback is different from other positions, in that you do want to make a commitment,'' he said. "[But] I don't know if you can necessarily make a permanent commitment. So much can change over the course of an NFL season, the circumstances.
"But I think that's the one position where you probably have to have a little bit more patience, maybe than some others as far as if a guy's not performing to the level you think he can and you're not getting the results, then you'd go ahead and make a move. It's somewhere in between. I don't want whoever the starter is to feel like, 'oh, if I make one mistake, I'm out.' but I also don't want him to feel like, 'hey, I've achieved something, this is my team for the year.'''
Both quarterbacks struggled in Monday night's preseason game against Washington. Hoyer, who started the game, completed 2 of 6 passes for 16 yards, while Manziel went 7-for-16 for 65 yards. Manziel made headlines by flashing his middle finger at the Redskins' bench.
Asked Tuesday whether Manziel's obscene gesture would factor into his decision on the starting quarterback, Pettine said, "We'll take into [account] all things QB from A to Z'.' Pettine also said Tuesday that "everything is still on the table" in regard to the battle between Manziel and Hoyer.
On Sunday, Pettine denied a ESPN report saying that Manziel has moved ahead of Hoyer on the depth chart and said there was no front-runner to start the team's Sept. 7 regular-season opener at Pittsburgh.
"To me, if there was a clear-cut favorite at this point, it would probably mean that one of them wasn't playing very well,'' Pettine said. "And it's a good problem, having two guys that we think are both capable of being NFL starters.''
Hoyer, 28, threw for 615 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions in three starts with the Browns last season before tearing his ACL. The team went 3-0 in those games.
Cleveland selected Manziel with the No. 22 pick in this year's draft. The 21-year-old won the Heisman Trophy in his redshirt freshman season at Texas A&M in 2012.
The Browns went 4-12 and finished in last place in the AFC North last season.
- Chris Johnson