BEREA, Ohio—Less than 72 hours before the official start of Browns training camp, Mike Pettine re-affirmed his feeling that Josh McCown will likely be the Browns opening day starter against the Jets on Sept. 13.
Pettine was asked if he thought Johnny Manziel would be able to win the starting quarterback job in the preseason.
“I wouldn’t rule it out but if I had to, I’d say Josh McCown likely will be our opening day starter,” Pettine said in an informal pre-camp interview with local beat writers. “I would say likely be, but wouldn’t want to say he is. I can’t guarantee it.”
At the end of the team’s minicamp in June, Pettine said he didn’t see an open competition for the starting quarterback position this year as he did last year between Brian Hoyer and Manziel.
“I’m saying the same thing,” Pettine said. “We’re still in year one (of a new offense). It’s time for us to take the fundamentals and put pads on and see if we can execute them. We’ll circle back around and tailor to certain players.”
Pettine said whether McCown or Manziel plays, offensive coordinator John DeFilippo will tailor the scheme to the quarterbacks’ skill sets.
“(McCown’s) skill set is obviously very different than Johnny’s,” Pettine said. “We would have to tailor a game plan for him just like you would for any other quarterback. What plays well in our inventory for plays when he’s in there to we want to highlight and what we want to stay away from.
“From an experience standpoint, (McCown’s) that much further ahead.”
Pettine described Manziel’s skill set in this way.
“Manziel just from a mobility standpoint, (we’ll) put him on the run, the sprint passes, the boot passes, run stuff where McCown is more of a traditional pocket passer,” he said. “McCown is a better athlete than most give him credit for so he’s able to get on the move.”