BEREA—Following through with what Mike Pettine said on Wednesday, the Browns added another quarterback arm to the roster. The question is how long will he be with the team?
With the Browns down to two quarterbacks for practice, they signed 27-year old quarterback Pat Devlin Thursday morning and he was on the field for Thursday’s practice. Devlin is not expected to play in Saturday’s third preseason game, but likely will play in the preseason finale next Thursday at Chicago.
Johnny Manziel was on the field, but idle for the third practice in a row and Connor Shaw is recuperating from surgery on his right thumb. Manziel will not play against Tampa Bay and likely will be held out of the preseason finale against the Bears on Sept.3.
“Just given the short week and not wanting to put him out there against Chicago, I could see he would be down for the next two (preseason games),” Pettine said.
Pettine said nothing has changed in the evaluation of Manziel’s sore elbow.
“Nothing’s different from (Wednesday),” Pettine said. “We made the move and brought Pat Devlin.”
Pettine said Devlin will be used only in an emergency situation against Tampa Bay, but likely will play in the preseason finale against the Bears.
Devlin, (6-3, 220) is officially in his third NFL season out of Delaware. Originally signed by Miami as an undrafted free agent in 2011, Devlin has spent time during the regular season with the Dolphins (2011-13) and Vikings (2014). He spent part of the 2015 offseason with the Bears. Devlin has never taken a snap in an NFL regular season game.
After transferring from Penn State, Devlin started 26 games for Delaware where he completed 506-of-776 passes for 5,696 yards with 37 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.
“Any time you step on the field, you want to put your best foot forward,” Devlin said after his first practice. “It’s early but I have a lot of learning to do.”
Devlin said he was assisting coaching a high school football team in Pennsylvania when he received the call from the Browns.
Devlin has a connection with Browns quarterbacks coach Kevin O’Connell from 2011.
“Kevin and I were in Miami together in the preseason.”
Pettine termed Manziel’s injury as a minor setback on Wednesday.
“Yeah, that is a strong word,” Pettine said. “I just see it as a minor setback. If this was something he had never experienced before or the MRI showed some damage, I would be a lot more concerned. This being something he has dealt with before, and we are confident that shutting him down maybe a little bit longer that it will all come back. Very pleased with where he is. I just see it as a minor setback.”
To make room for Devlin, the Browns waived offensive lineman Ryan Seymour, who appeared in 11 games last season with three starts at center. Seymour was suspended by the NFL for the first four games of the NFL season for performance enhancing substances.
Pryor Set for Debut: WR Terrelle Pryor was back on the field for the second-straight day Thursday and is on schedule to make his preseason debut Saturday against Tampa Bay. Pryor missed the Orange & Brown scrimmage in Columbus and the first two preseason games with a hamstring injury. Pettine said on Wednesday that if Pryor was able to practice Wednesday and Thursday he should play in Saturday’s game.
Pryor said he’s anxious to show what he can do.
“I do want to get on the field as fast as possible,” he said. “When trainer Joe (Sheehan) gives me the green light.”
Pryor said he’s catching between 250-280 passes a day on the JUGS machine.
“We want to see how he responds to the team reps he took in practice,” Pettine said.
Pettine said the coaching staff didn’t expect Pryor to make the transition from quarterback to wide receiver in the preseason, but the hamstring injury hasn’t helped the evaluation process.
“We know he’s a project,” Pettine said. “We want him to continue to get better.”
Pettine admitted that the decision to keep him on the roster will come down to their projection of his continual development.
“It is a projection and we have less information to make that projection on.”
Taylor Out: DL Phil Taylor seemed to be on pace to make his preseason debut on Saturday against Tampa Bay, but he was on the stationary bike during the first part of practice on Thursday.
Pettine said that the team is letting Taylor return at his own pace.
“He’s just really day to day with the rehab.,” Pettine said. “We leave it up to them. If it doesn’t feel right, we leave it up to them.”
Taylor is trying to bounce back from two knee surgeries last season.
Pettine said that players who didn’t practice Thursday likely would not play in the preseason game Saturday against Tampa Bay.
On the stationary bikes were: DL Phil Taylor (knee), OL Michael Bowie (shoulder), DB Justin Gilbert (hip flexor), DL Ishmaa’ily Kitchen (groin), DB Robert Nelson Jr. (hamstring) and DB K’Waun Williams (abdominal). Not practicing were: FB Luke Lundy (concussion), LB Barkevious Mingo (knee), DB Jordan Poyer (concussion), QB Connor Shaw (right thumb), TE Randall Telfer (foot), RB Glenn Winston (knee) and DB Ifo Ekpre-Olomu (knee).
Duke Johnson, Haden and Gipson are also expected to make their preseason debuts Saturday.
“At this point I do,” Pettine said. “They both practiced almost full.”
Haden said he thinks he’ll play.
“Look forward to (playing),” Haden said.
Pettine said Duke Johnson has looked good since returning from the hamstring injury.
“Duke’s been great,” Pettine said. “We’ve gradually ramped up his reps. We have certain plays for certain guys and some more matched to Duke’s skill set.”
Pettine said K’Waun Williams could play if it was the regular season.
“It’s a time thing,” he said. “It’s a strained oblique.”
Banner to ESPN: Former Browns CEO Joe Banner is joining ESPN as an analyst starting Sept. 3. Banner posted this on his Twitter account.
“Thank you all for your supportive comments about my hiring at ESPN. I am very excited and proud to be joining such an outstanding group.”