Johnny Manziel may have been benched by the Cleveland Browns, but it isn't quite the end for the Browns quarterback just yet.
Browns coach Mike Pettine was asked - in his Wednesday press conference - if Manziel has played his last game with the Browns, Pettine responded firmly "I certainly hope not" he then further elaborated: "This isn't a dead end, this is a hurdle, it's an obstacle."
Is this a PR move? Or are the Browns really committed to keeping Manziel and the distractions he brings? The organisation did invest a first round pick in him, so it's reasonable for the team to remain committed, despite the troubles he has gone through.
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Then again that same reason could be used for their unwillingness to admit Manziel's future with the team, given the media scrutiny that would ensue.
Pettine also said: "Sometimes you have to take a step back to take a few forward."
Truer words have never been spoken, especially when it regards Manziel, who right now, with every on-field progression he makes, there seems to be an off-field incident that drags him backwards.
Browns left tackle Joe Thomas agreed with Pettine's decision to bench Manziel, saying: "Judging by the reaction in the locker room I think we support coaches decision."
The most dangerous thing for a quarterbacks future is when the locker room turns against you, say what you will about on-field skill, but leadership and camaraderie do count for something, and once you lose that with your teammates it's incredibly difficult to reignite.
Whether or not Manziel remains with the Browns in the future is to be seen, all we know right now is that Josh McCown will be the starter against the Baltimore Ravens while Austin Davis backs him up.
Johnny will have plenty of time to think about his actions and his future from the bench.
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