BEREA: Veteran leader Karlos Dansby acknowledges first-round draft picks Johnny Manziel and Justin Gilbert had disappointing rookie seasons for the Browns, but Dansby asserted Wednesday he isn’t ready to dismiss them as lumps of coal.
BEREA: Browns eight-time Pro Bowl left tackle Joe Thomas doesn’t know much about teammate and third-string quarterback Connor Shaw. When the undrafted rookie from the University of South Carolina thrashed Washington’s backups in the preseason, Thomas was distracted.
“I was probably eating a hot dog on the sidelines hiding it,” Thomas said.
CHARLOTTE, N.C.: After rookie Johnny Manziel was knocked out of the Browns’ 17-13 loss to the Carolina Panthers with an injured left hamstring late in the first half Sunday, he hobbled onto a platform for a news conference and attempted to sell himself as the franchise’s quarterback of the future.
CHARLOTTE, N.C.: It would be easy for Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and General Manager Ray Farmer to look at the Browns’ 1-5 swoon since Nov. 16, their four consecutive losses that could stretch to five Sunday at Baltimore, and decide to fire coach Mike Pettine.
What went right: On third-and-6 from the Browns’ 19-yard line, quarterback Brian Hoyer and tight end Jordan Cameron connected for an 81-yard touchdown, the team’s longest play of the season. Cameron broke loose as a result of blown coverage, caught the pass at the Browns’ 38 and ran 62 yards untouched into the end zone for a 13-10 lead with 9:59 remaining in the fourth quarter.
Browns free safety Tashaun Gipson’s hopes of returning from a sprained medial collateral ligament in his right knee before the end of this season were dashed Saturday when the team placed him on injured reserve.
1. Rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel will try to bounce back in his second NFL start. Manziel’s first start last week was awful. He threw two interceptions, and the Cincinnati Bengals throttled the Browns 30-0. The playoffs are pretty much a pipe dream at this point for the Browns, who need to beat the Panthers and Baltimore Ravens the final two weeks and receive help from other teams. The Bengals dominated the Browns just over a month after Cleveland won 24-3 at Cincinnati on Nov. 6.
0 — The number of points scored by the Browns last week. It was ugly. Being all but mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, simply finding the end zone will count as a small win this week as the offense looks to find a rhythm with rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel.
BEREA: Browns All-Pro left tackle Joe Thomas wasn’t seeking playoff karma when he sent a congratulatory text message to his buddy and former teammate D’Qwell Jackson after the Indianapolis Colts clinched the AFC South title Sunday.