Hoyer is Named Starter for Opener

Veteran wins duel over rookie Manziel for right to start against Pittsburgh.

Browns fans might never know what the deciding factor was in Mike Pettine naming Brian Hoyer the starting quarterback for the team. Was it the status quo? The experience factor? or was it due to the 'One Finger Salute?'

Hoyer, who was in a quarterback competition with rookie Johnny Manziel had a lackluster preseason to date. Hoyer was just 2-of-6 for 16 yards in Monday night's loss to the Redskins.

"He was the clear leader from the beginning," Pettine released through the Browns website. "We've maintained all along that if it was close, I would prefer to go with the more experienced player. Brian has done a great job in the meeting rooms and with his teammates on the practice field and in the locker room."

Hoyer is coming back from a torn ACL he suffered last October against the Bills. Pettine said it was Hoyer's total "body of work" that helped make the decision. Through two preseason games Hoyer is 8-of-20 for 108 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.

Manziel,--who received much attention,mostly negative, for his raising of his middle finger to the Redskins bench-- is still expected to play at some point this season.

"(Manziel's) certainly made great strides," Pettine said. "We are pleased with where he is, and he has shown that he has come a long way in his ability to pick up the playbook, be coachable and lead an offense. We are confident that Johnny is going to have a great future, but we just felt that Brian still had a decided edge on him."

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