It is no secret that Johnny Manziel has become one of the NFL's most talked about players in the league, but there could be a serious benefit to starting the season with him on the bench.
The reason that Johnny Manziel should not start week one against the Pittsburgh Steelers is that he can't handle the pressure of expectations. Ever since he was drafted, Cleveland sports have been at an all time high in terms of team potential and fan expectations. Johnny is at the center of the spotlight in the football realm, and will be under the magnifying glass when he makes his first real NFL start.
Cleveland fans are obviously not expecting a championship, but they are expecting a winning season from the Browns. Looking at the first few regular season games for the Browns, where they play the Steelers, Saints, and Ravens, I think that Hoyer should start these three games because of his veteran presence and his experience.
These first three games could easily send the Browns into the bye week with an 0-3 record, which is not the type of pressure that Johnny Manziel wants to carry throughout the season. However, if he comes in and starts after a rough start by Hoyer, then it makes it easier for him to come in and be the savior that the Browns drafted him to be. He could easily win the next couple of games against the Titans, Steelers (at Home), Jaguars, then Raiders.
The ideal situation for the Browns is to ultimately hand the keys over to Johnny and let him be Johnny. They did not draft him to bench him, but by making this tactical move, they could actually put themselves in a better spot.
Obviously another deciding factor in this quarterback competition will depend on how Manziel plays in his second preseason game, where he will again back up Brian Hoyer. The Brown's coaches will have their plates full of decisions after Monday's game against the Redskins.
In conclusion, I think that this move would give Johnny a better reputation in the NFL if it goes according to plan. The only downside to this strategy would be if Hoyer actually plays well in the first few games, because then the Cleveland coaching staff will have a big decision to make.
Browns Head Coach Mike Pettine has told the media several times that he plans to declare the starter by the third preseason game.