Just a short time after it began, head coach Mike Pettine took exception to a series of photos and videos that surfaced of Manziel allegedly partying during the Browns' bye week last week. The various media, which show Manziel wielding a champagne bottle just months after completing rehab, frustrated his head coach to a point that could seriously alter the Browns' future.
When asked about the photos on Tuesday, Pettine said he was considering a benching. By late afternoon, he made it official, and dropped Manziel all the way to No. 3.
"Josh McCown will be the starting quarterback on Monday night against the Ravens," Pettine said in a statement released by the team. "I informed the quarterbacks of that decision after I sat down and spoke with Johnny, Flip (John DeFilippo) and Kevin (O'Connell) after practice today. Johnny will be the third quarterback. I've spoken to Ray (Farmer) and Jimmy (Haslam) to inform them of my decision, and they are in full support."
It will be interesting to see if the team goes back to Manziel after this week. He was coming off perhaps his best game in Week 10 against the Steelers. This was supposed to be a rest-of-year audition to see what he could do, but it didn't last long. Pettine only mentioned McCown starting Week 12 so it's possible this is yet another attempt to get through to Manziel, who can't seem to stay out of trouble.