Cleveland, OH (WOIO) - Another day, another report, another play-action fake designed to throw off the competition. 71 days away from the NFL Draft, and it's tough to know who and what to believe, especially when it comes to the Browns' top pick. The common theme was that the Banner/Lombardi regime, technically still pulling out of Berea as we speak, absolutely, positively loved Johnny Manziel. But on Wednesday, that theory was blown up by NFL Media's Daniel Jeremiah, who wrote that the Manziel hype was actually just a smokescreen, and that the Browns (presumably the new regime) actually wants Fresno State quarterback Derek Carr.
Like many theories, that makes sense. Carr may be ranked below Manziel, Teddy Bridgewater and Blake Bortles, but the Browns could get him with the 26th overall pick, leaving that 4th overall pick for more of a sure thing (Sammy Watkins, anyone?), while they also move forward, at least in 2014, with Brian Hoyer.
The problem is, tomorrow will bring a new report, and the day after, and the day after, as teams master their misdirection and try to keep everyone else off balance.
Would Manziel make the Browns more relevant, as some fans want? Initially. Could he possibly live up to the hype? Ron Jaworski doesn't think so. The ESPN analyst, and former Eagles quarterback, who watches more game tape than all of the NFL coaches combined, said on Wednesday that he wouldn't draft Manziel in the first three.....rounds.
But once Manziel puts on a show at his personal workout, the hype machine will start rolling again. And the 2012 Heisman winner will likely end up where he's been headed all along: in the first three picks of the NFL Draft.
And if that's how it plays out, some Browns fans will feel as though their team missed out...again. And if Carr isn't around at 26? Not to worry. There's always A.J. McCarron.