Extending Brian Hoyer’s contract now makes some sense. However, given the cap space that the Browns have, it is not critical. They could easily afford a long term deal with Hoyer after the season even if he becomes the starter with his play in 2014. So why is GM Ray Farmer so concerned about getting Hoyer signed before the season?
I believe that the recent off field actions by 1st round pick Johnny Manziel have something to do with it.
First, there is the injury concern about Manziel. As the Redskins found out, when a relatively frail QB runs as part of his game, it is critical to have a quality backup. Both Manziel and Robert Griffin III have similar body types. And Griffin has been hurt in both of his seasons in the NFL.
A second reason is more significant. The efforts to resign Hoyer now indicates to me that the team has serious concerns about Manziel’s maturity and development. The recent statements by veteran Browns show some are tiring of the drama that Manziel brings. Each time he makes the NFL Channel opening
segment the view of Manziel by the vets sinks a little lower. Manziel is going to have to much better moving the ball than Hoyer to win the job.
Third team management is clearly concerned about Manziel’s drinking. While his party attitude does not violate laws or NFL rules, there is a growing concern by some that the drinking could become an issue. A DUI will result in suspension just like a failed test for a PED.
Last and perhaps most significant is the recent decrease of comments by the coaching staff about how quickly Manziel is developing. All the news about Manziel involves his party habits. Early on I questioned his willingness to commit the time in the film room necessary to take full advantage of his athleticism. We will see. The thing about being a scout of college players is the truth about wither you were right or wrong will always be obvious.
I want to make it clear as a long suffering Browns fan I am hoping Manziel and Hoyer are both very productive. But at this point I have my doubts about Manziel.
That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.
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Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/ and the live show Mondays at 6 PM Eastern time on .
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