In his third career start, Johnny Manziel
won his first game as Cleveland Browns quarterback. The 28-14 victory over the Tennessee Titans was also the team’s first win of the season. In what many had refered to as the Heisman Trophy matchup, it was Johnny Manziel who came out victorious over Marcus Mariota, who had two touchdowns passes in the second half for the Titans (1-1), but took a pounding by the Browns defense who sacked the second overall pick seven times.
It was Manziel who came out throwing, connecting on a 60-yard touchdown pass to Travis Benjamin on Cleveland’s second play and doing so again late in the fourth quarter on a clutch 50-yard score with just under three minutes to play. Travis Benjamin also returned a punt 78-yards for a touchdown in the first half helping the Browns (1-1) build a 21-0 lead.
Head Coach Mike Pettine even has a new nickname for Travis Benjamin. Titan Killer. In one of the most dominant individual performances of a Browns player since their return to Cleveland, Benjamin scored on touchdowns of 78, 60 and 50 yards in their victory over the Titans. “He might not be allowed in Nashville ever again,” Mike Pettine said after the game.
Johnny Manziel did his part, finishing the game 8 of 15 for 172 yards and two touchdown passes while starting in place of the injured Josh McCown. Manziel may be viewed as the quarterback of the future for the Cleveland Browns, but he’s still not viewed by the coaching staff the current answer. Regardless of how well he played Sunday, the Browns still consider Josh McCown their starter, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
At the post game press conference, coach Mike Pettine was asked if Manziel will keep the starting job, to which Mike Pettine replied, “(QB) Josh (McCown) is in the concussion protocol still. So until that situation is resolved, he will be the starter.” Then the question was asked if Manziel will start after McCown is cleared: “We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it. I’m not going to speak on that one,” Pettine answered. Until Johnny Manziel is officially named the Cleveland Browns starter, at least he got to start the home opener for the 2015 season and win.