I don’t know what to think anymore. Just a couple days after head coach Mike Pettine said that he has two starting-caliber quarterbacks, the Browns sign a veteran QB in Rex Grossman. What does this mean? Why would they do that?
There are a few possible options. One might be that the Cleveland brass is very worried about injuries. The biggest knock on Johnny Football Manziel (except the ridiculous hate for his partying) is that he will be injured very easily. And Brian Hoyer is just back from a torn ACL. Maybe Cleveland was simply ensuring that Tyler Thigpen would never be in a game for them by signing a 3rd-string upgrade in Grossman.
But I think the move is more telling than that. I think it’s bad news for Brian Hoyer.
If the Browns were confident in Hoyer and intended him to be the starter, the third-string QB would be a complete afterthought. Hoyer would play through the season, with Manziel watching and learning. But if the Browns intend to start Manziel, you have a much higher chance that he will be injured, and they will have to put Hoyer in for a significant amount of time. And in that case, Hoyer would have absolutely no competition or back-up. In Grossman, the Browns now have a solid veteran competitor waiting in the wings.
The Grossman signing really makes it look like Manziel is clearly the team’s favorite QB, and they are going to let the veterans battle it out for second place. In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if the team is now willing to trade Hoyer, sending their “starting-caliber quarterback” to a team that desperately needs one. A few teams are out there that could use a solid game-manager like Hoyer. Houston, for example.
Could you see a Brain Hoyer for Andre Johnson trade going down? I certainly can…