BEREA—Mike Pettine did his best to keep the Browns starting quarterback on Sunday a secret, but it appears as though the shroud has been lifted and the information has been revealed.
Johnny Manziel, who received most of the first-team reps in practice all week as Josh McCown continued to nurse his injured ribs, is expected to start for the Browns against the Steelers on Sunday, according to Mary Kay Cabot of cleveland.com.
A start on Sunday would be the second-consecutive start for Manziel this season, the first time that has happened since he started against Cincinnati and Carolina in back-to-back weeks last season.
This season, Manziel has started in two games— in a week two win against Tennessee and in a week-nine loss to the Cincinnati Bengals last Thursday night— completing 23 of his 48 pass attempts for 340 yards and three touchdowns.
Earlier this week, Manziel was asked to grade his most recent performance against the Bengals and the second-year quarterback seemed to believe that while he wasn't perfect, he saw improvement in himself.
"There was a lot of good and there were some things that were easy that I missed. I would have liked to have some stuff back. In the first half, we did some good things and moved the ball before the half," Manziel said. "I think I did some good things, and I think there were some things there that I didn’t see or missed a little bit."
Manziel also indicated that he felt that he learned better from in-game reps, which is exactly what he'll receive on Sunday against Pittsburgh, if he is indeed the starter.
"I get with the guys, every game, every game-speed rep... I felt things starting to slow down more and more and seeing guys here and there," Manziel said. "I feel that I am getting more comfortable so it is going to be hard knowing that I feel like I am getting better and learning a lot being out there and having to go back."
Maybe the most surprising part of Manziel's media availability is that he admitted that he often can't see over the offensive line in front of him, forcing him to roll out of the pocket when necessary and to, sometimes, make throws strictly based on faith.
While that may not be what Browns fans want to hear, Manziel said it's the truth, but it's not necessarily an excuse.
"I am not going to be able to sit there like some of these taller quarterbacks in the league and just be able to see everything happen as it plays on. There are going to be times where I am not going to be able to see something and I am going to have to make a faith throw, knowing that it is Cover 3 and this guy is here and this guy went there with where this person is," Manziel said. "There are going to be times when I am not going to be able to see everything like everyone else is as clear as day."
For all of your Browns news and updates from Berea, follow Hayden Grove on Twitter: @H_Grove.