The Bengals get to see how their defense will stand up against a “midget” quarterback now that the Browns have called on Johnny Manziel to take over for for the beleaguered Brian Hoyer in their game on Sunday.
In his regular Monday night guest spot on Bengals Line on WLW-AM radio in Cincinnati, Bengals coach Marvin Lewis called Johnny Manziel “a midget” when asked if their game plan changes if Manziel quarterbacks instead of Hoyer.
“You’ll get a little bit more movement if Manziel’s the quarterback, the thing that they did against Buffalo. But other than that, no, it doesn’t impact you at all. You’ve got to go defend the offense, you don’t defend the player, particularly a midget.”
Cleveland.com reported that Lewis later offered an apology for his remark which has caused an uproar among Browns fans. “I apologize to Johnny and the Browns and all the fans in Cleveland,” he said. “It was just a poor remark. I really didn’t mean anything by it.”
The Browns lost three of their last four contests, forcing Mike Pettine to make a change. Hoyer has thrown just one touchdown and eight interceptions in that span. In their loss last week against the Colts, Hoyer completed only 14 of 31 passes for 140 yards.
Manziel got a brief test as field general against the Buffalo Bills two weeks ago and made the best of it. The 2012 Heisman Trophy winner effectively marched the Browns 80 yards downfield, capping off the drive with a 10 yard TD run.
Manziel looked impressive, completing five passes for 63 yards. However, critics undermined the performance saying that it came during garbage time. They attribute Manziel’s effectiveness to the fact that the Bills fielded a prevent defense in a game in which they lead by over three touchdowns.
On Tuesday, Fox Sports reported that Manziel will be getting the starting nod over Hoyer. A Cleveland Browns source told ESPN.com’s Jeremy Fowler that Manziel is expected to arrive at the facility sometime Tuesday to begin his preparation for Sunday’s game.