Mike Pettine: Browns won't write off Manziel, Gilbert


The Cleveland Browns first-round haul in 2014 has left a lot to be desired. No. 8 overall pick Justin Gilbert has been publicly chastised several times recently and No. 22 pick Johnny Manziel admitted he needed to take things "more seriously."

However, coach Mike Pettine isn't ready to cast the young players aside after just one season. 

"Are we ready to write both of those players off as busts because they didn't produce as rookies?'' Pettine said Wednesday, per The Plain Dealer. "I'm not anywhere near that point. That's just a knee-jerk. Some rookies come in and play right away. Others it takes some time.''

Pettine agreed with Manziel that casting career judgments after just seven quarters of football would be unfair, but the coach isn't handing out starting jobs either.

"I just think that's being created that we're looking to write him off already," Pettine said of the quarterback. "He's a player on our roster. He's going to have every opportunity to compete next year. But that, to me, is so far in the future. We'll assess it all when we get done and every position will be addressed."

Quarterback and cornerback are two of the most difficult positions to step onto an NFL field for the first time and excel at right away. Neither Gilbert nor Manziel has lived up to expectations thus far, but the Browns aren't going to cut bait before giving their first-round picks a full offseason and a second campaign to prove whether they will sink or swim.

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