Report: Major surprise if Johnny Manziel isn’t named starter

If you see Johnny Manziel this week, pleasantly remind the Cleveland Browns quarterback he has a game to play on Sunday.

At least, that’s the expectation, according to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport following a 37-3 beatdown at the hands of the Cincinnati Bengals. Manziel would replace Austin Davis.

The Browns had given Davis the starting nod after he led the team into scoring position last Monday against the Baltimore Ravens, going 7-of-10 for 77 yards and tossing the game-tying score.

Plus, Manziel reportedly lied about partying in Texas during Cleveland’s bye week, which was caught on video and went viral. Head coach Mike Pettine made the proper decision at that moment to Manziel, despite it being the wrong move for the Browns future.

Davis stepped in for an injured Josh McCown (clavicle) but underperformed, though it admittedly wasn’t a shocking development. Cleveland was likely to turn to Manziel eventually.

But the 22-year-old has another chance to stake a claim to the No. 1 job.

Cleveland spent a first-round pick on Manziel in 2014 yet has only given him one opportunity to be the unquestioned starter for an extended stretch of games. That moment came three weeks ago, but Manziel messed up that chance with his bye-week escapades.

Now, as long as the Browns bench Davis in favor if Manziel as expected, he’ll have a four-game audition as the leader of the offense.

Pretty soon, Manziel will run out of opportunities in Cleveland. It would be wise to make this one count.